- Title: Thai boxing match resumes, but no audiences to contain virus infections
- Date: 4th July 2020
- Summary: VARIOUS OF TRADITIONAL BAND PERFORMING BOXING COMPETITION ONGOING / EMPTY STADIUM
- Embargoed: 18th July 2020 13:46
- Keywords: Thailand audience boxing cluster competition coronavirus infections sport
- Location: BANGKOK, THAILAND
- City: BANGKOK, THAILAND
- Country: Thailand
- Topics: Health/Medicine,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA003CLE76TJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Thai boxing matches in Bangkok have started to resume on Saturday (July 4) after being suspended by the government since March after a large cluster of coronavirus infected people were found to have been at the boxing ring.
A boxing ring on the outskirts of the capital city has resumed its halted matches, but according to government restrictions, no audiences were allowed to watch inside the stadium. Only the boxers' team members were allowed in to the arena.
There is no date set for when and how many people will be allowed back in at this point in time. The matches are being broadcasted live on television for the time being.
On the first day, as 21-year old Khathawut Tumthong returns to the ring, he expressed joy and excitement.
"Yeah, it feels a bit strange (with no audience). I was used to the sounds of crowds cheering, but it's all weird because there's no audience," he said.
The government has recently eased some restrictions on sports competition, so that training sessions and practices can resume. But the Tourism and Sport Ministry have yet to issue guidance that will stipulate the number of spectators allowed in sports venues.
"The boxers were in jeopardy, they don't have alternative jobs. The same goes for those who work as boxing judges, they don't have a second job to support them. They were all affected (by the coronavirus). We have to be understanding. Today is a good start for the boxing ring industry," said Viboon Jampa-nguern, the director of the Thai boxing committee.
In March, the number of confirmed cases in Thailand spiked, causing the country to go into lockdown and public places ordered to close temporarily to control the virus.
(Production: Athit Perawongmetha, Juarawee Kittisilpa)
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