The resurgent Cambodian martial art nearly wiped out by Khmer Rouge

A repurposed Phnom Penh wedding venue becomes a seething pit of pugilism as the Cambodian martial art of kun bokator roars onto the international stage only decades after near-extinction.

The ancient form’s inclusion in the Southeast Asian Games is the next step in what San Kim Sean — widely known as “The Grand Master” — calls his dream of bringing the sport to the world.

“I hope my dream will come true, to me and to the world,” he told AFP at the SEA Games, before detailing the story of how the fighting style of the Khmer Empire nearly died.

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