Ready, set, fight: Thailand, Cambodia spar to stake claim on Mekong boxing at SEA Games

Kun Khmer and Muay Thai – boxing disciplines from Cambodia and Thailand, respectively – use fists, elbows and legs, and evoke national pride.

As Southeast Asia’s finest athletes descend on Phnom Penh for the Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games), Thai and Cambodian keyboard warriors are duking it out online over who owns the origin story to the Mekong region’s rich history of boxing.

Both Kun Khmer and Muay Thai – boxing disciplines from Cambodia and Thailand, respectively – use fists, elbows and legs, and integrally evoke ancient lore, imagery and a deep sense of national pride in countries that share hundreds of kilometres of border and generations of culture.

The Cambodian hosts of the SEA Games, which began on May 5, have listed the discipline as Kun Khmer, choosing to promote the home-grown variation of a martial arts lineage shared across Mekong countries Laos, Myanmar and Thailand.

In full: https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/people/article/3219553/ready-set-fight-thailand-cambodia-spar-stake-claim-mekong-boxing-sea-games

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