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TAKRAW

Takraw
An another famous Thai sport is "TAKRAW" (ตะกร้อ).
Takraw

takraw ball It is similar to volley-ball with a net. But players cannot touch the ball with the hands but only with head and feet or any other part of the body. Each team involves three players and three contacts are allowed before throwing back the ball to the other side. On the contrary of volley ball one player can touch the ball more than once. Those players are very skilful. They really jump into the air to make a smash. The ball is made of osier.

On the evening, after work, "TAKRAW" games can be seen all over Thailand. Takraw
Takraw


An another game is flying kite (ว่าว). Often there are a male (จุฬา)and a female (ปักเป้า). The aim is to make the other kite fall. Kites can be seen in Thailand during the "cold" season.

During Ayuthaya period, kites were used as war weapons.



SOCCER

Thai people love soccer. On Thai TV, European soccer matches can be seen. Manchester United is the most famous club. The national team is also famous because it won the Asian Games final in 1997. But its level isn't good enough to compete with European soccer. During Asian Games in Bangkok in 1998, Kuwait defeated Thailand in quarter-final.

In the football World Cup in France during july 1998, Thailand did not play but at least a Thai referee became famous for his smile. Back to Thailand he became a real star.

Kiatisak Senamuang called "Zico" is the first Thai soccer player to play outside Thailand. In 1999 he played in the English football league.



TENNIS

The woman tennis player, Tamarine Tanasugarn, is well-known in Thailand.

In year 2002 Paradorn Srichaphan became famous in Thailand as he reached tennis rank world number 16 (he scalped world number one and number two and won two professional titles). Paradorn is well-known for giving a "WAI" (Thai bow) to spectators. The prime minister has made him a cultural ambassador for the kingdom. He was also granted an audience with the King.

tennis
Paradorn becomes monk in off-season 2005-2006 during one week. Paradorn's on-court behavior has always been exemplary. There are no wild fist-pumps or foul language, just a polite bow ( "WAI" - ไหว้ ) at the end of each match, win or lose.
TENNIS


GOLF

Tiger Woods is a Thai-American golfer famous in the whole world.

Tiger Woods is ranked No 1 since many years and is on the way to beat Jack Nicklaus' 18 majors record.
Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods

Thongchai Jaidee is the new Thai golf star.



SEA

One of the favourite sport just after lunch is the siesta. Weather is so hot. Thai people say "only crazy people make sport with a so hot weather". Some Thai make sport early morning. In Lumpini park, many Thai people making Chinese gymnastic on early morning before heat. Also some are running.

beach
On week-end Thai people often leave Bangkok and go to sea resorts like Hua Hin, Pattaya and Bang Saen. They practise sea games such as jet sky, water-skiing. Thai people are rarely seen in swimming suit. They swim with their pants and tee-shirt. Thai people say "only crazy people show their skin to the sun. It will become dark and it is dangerous for the skin. But the main reason why Thai women do not wear swimming suit is shyness. Even Thai men are wearing shorts.
Thai beach

Skin darkness is not appreciated by Thai people because it is the symbol of the peasant. If one has its skin dark it means that he is working outside. Symbol of beauty is the skin whiteness that is why Chiang Mai girls are so reputed for their beauty. On the contrary "ISAN" women (อีสาน - northeastern part of Thailand), particularly near Cambodia, are not in the standard of the beauty because they have a dark skin. A Thai proverb says "black as a Cambodian". Thai people are puzzled by topless foreigner women on the beach. A normal Thai woman never has such a behavior!



Some Thai sports includes animal fighting like bull fighting in the south of Thailand and cock fighting also.

Betting is also a national Thai sport. Thai people are gamblers. They love to bet on everything (race horses, football , boxing, animal fighting and so on...). cock fighting
Cock fighting

Fighting birds are big business. Champion cocks can fetch from a few thousand to a few hundred thousand baht, while bets at licensed cockpits start at 5000 baht. Total bets for a single fight can reach up to 1 million baht. During year 2004 bird flu, the government temporarily banned cockfighting. Sometimes trainers go mouth-to-mouth with wounded birds to suck out blood and mucus. So the government required trainers to keep a passport for their fighting cocks. The documents contain the birds' vital statistics, some photographs and a seal of good health from a veterinarian.

cockfight pit
On Sunday afternoons, Thai people crowd into a the hangar-sized arena. The arena sits beneath a corrugated metal roof. Trainers rubbed down each rooster with cooling lemongrass tea. The crowd roars. Cocks crow. Cocks in the ring flared their plumage and spewed kicks and pecks. An announcer wanders the arena with a microphone describing upcoming fights. People talk and bet.
Cockfight pit


Thai dances are also very famous worldwide. One well-known dance is the bamboo dance in which dancers shall avoid bamboo sticks. It requires co-ordination. dancers
Dancers






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