Thai star Stamp Fairtex is ready for the biggest bout of her young career on home soil.
The 20-year-old will take on reigning ONE Kickboxing Atomweight World Champion “Killer Bee” Kai Ting Chuang in the co-main event of ONE: KINGDOM OF HEROES in Bangkok, Thailand on 6 October.
Stamp grew up in Rayong on Thailand’s northeastern coast – an idyllic location for some, and the ideal starting point for her career.
“Rayong is a big city and ideal holiday destination,” Stamp says.
“The locals make a living from farming. My family has rubber, durian, and rambutan farms.”
Her first exposure to Muay Thai was through her family, who were a big part of the local scene. Her dad competed, and her uncle ran a local gym where members of her family regularly trained.
“My uncle ran a training camp called Kiat Boon Kern. It was like a training camp for our family where our relatives came to train,” she explains.
“My father was really good at the knee strike, and I enjoyed watching him.”
Despite her family’s close ties to the sport, Stamp wasn’t pushed into Muay Thai. Instead, she remained focused on her work on a farm and her schooling.
“I was just an ordinary girl, helping my parents on the fruit farms,” she explains.
“I went to a big school, which is quite famous. I liked P.E. and music classes.”
While at school, Stamp found herself targeted by bullies, and she eventually ran out of patience and decided to do something to help her cope with the abuse thrown her way.
“I was bullied all the time. I always came back home from school with bruises here and there,” she says.
“Because my family had a training camp, I thought I could do something to fight back.”
Though her mother was initially unsure about her daughter training Muay Thai, she eventually gave her approval. Stamp never looked back.
“I got up at 5am every morning to run,” she says.
“Then, at around 7am, I came home to have a shower and go to school. I was always too late to participate in the morning activity.”
At the age of just 5, Stamp had her first bout, where she made a memorable start to her Muay Thai career.
“I won by KO in the first round,” she says.
“The bell rang, I attacked my opponent by knee, and I just won.”
Fast forward to present day and Stamp boasts an impressive record of 60-15-5, as well as multiple titles – including two Northeastern Thailand Championships in different weight classes.
She also starred in the acclaimed documentary, Buffalo Girls.
Based out of Fairtex Gym in Pattaya along ONE Super Series stars Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex, Saemapetch Fairtex, and Fabrice Fairtex Delannon, Stamp is surrounded by excellence.
However, despite being in an ideal spot to develop her career, Stamp had to overcome prejudice to succeed.
“The hardest thing was overcoming female stereotypes,” she explains.
“In Thailand, female Muay Thai athletes were not very culturally accepted. Females are viewed as weak and are expected to act ladylike.
“Every female who became a Muay Thai athlete has her passion. They want to be recognised, but in fact, they are not accepted by society.
“There are a lot of well-known female fighters these days. These days, it’s normal to have female athletes in this sport.”
Now, Stamp stands on the precipice of greatness as she prepares to face Chuang for the ONE Kickboxing Atomweight World Title in Bangkok.
Even though she has performed admirably to reach this stage in her young career, she says her top-level career is only just getting started.
“I haven’t won any big titles yet. I have won titles just from small competitions so far,” she says
“My next title challenge is going to be seen globally. The ONE Super Series World Title is something I want to pursue.
“I want to show the Thai people that I can do it, and I want to become champion so I can make my parents proud.
“I also want the world to see that Thai female athletes are good too, not only beautiful.”