Controlling the Range of a Fight – Anantasak

Anantasak Panyuthapum was a master of range control. He had the remarkable ability to keep fighters at his range for an entire contest and cause damage with his fists and elbows.

In this particular contest against Singdam O Aukritt (their second meeting), Anantasak keeps Singdam at arms length, keeping him right on the end of his elbows and punches. Anantasak is wherever he wants to be in this fight.

He does this via two main weapons; the teep and the jab.

He rarely moves backward in a hurry, only slowly drawing Singdam onto an elbow or a punch. He doesn’t move forward much either; he let’s Singdam do all the leg work. He achieves this by jabbing, but only with very minimal commitment i.e. not stepping forward a whole lot when he jabs and moving right back to his starting position. By doing this, he avoids any counters that may be on their way from Singdam, and draws Singdam forward into an elbow or punch.

He throws his teeps at two levels; hip height and thigh height, but never any higher. The constant peppering with teeps of this height disrupt Singdam’s rhythm, cause hesitation and naturally defend an incoming attack. A mid-section teep also does all of these jobs (as well as being a stronger strike), but a lower level teep can be executed at a closer range due to the fact that the thigh and hip are further forward than the belly is in a muay Thai guard, and so the lower level teep meets Anantasak’s needs.

One thing you’ll notice about Anantasak’s teeps is that every time he throws, he lands with the teeping leg to the rear and then re-adjusts, rather than the more common method of landing the foot exactly where it left off. This allows him to teep at close range, closer than jabbing range at times.

He uses his jab to set up his teep and, more so in this fight, he uses his teep to set up his jab and subsequent punches.

Having two long range weapons at his disposal and being taller than most of the opponents he faced, Anantasak was an expert at mixing the two to create a conundrum for fighters like Singdam, especially since Anantasak loved to use teeps at short-range.

As in their first fight, Anantasak pulls down Singdam’s guard with his left and delivers the elbow with his right. This causes a gash on Singdam’s forehead and ultimately ends the fight.

This fight took place in 1993 at Lumpinee stadium, and serves as a tutorial on how to control the range of a muay Thai fight.

Watch Anantasak’s Muay Thai Highlight

About Aaron Jahn

Aaron is an active muay Thai fighter and coach from the UK. He holds a BSc (hons) degree in Strength & Conditioning and is currently studying a Sports Therapy Master's degree in Leeds, UK. Aaron has fought over 20 times in Thailand and has spent years training at different muay Thai camps all over the country.
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