Of Cambodia's many talented kun Khmer fighters, there are three who stand out – the legend, the star, and the future. Here, in the first of three instalments, The Post focuses on the legend.
A veteran of the sport known as the “Tiger of Battambang”, Keo Rumchong has forged himself into a fighting legend in the Kingdom.
With a record of 150 wins, 13 losses, 4 draws – with 66 knockouts – Rumchong is a force to be reckoned with.
Fighting for The Riel Team out of Battambang province, he says kun Khmer is a great way to look after his health while also providing for his family.
“The sport has also given me the opportunity to travel the world and meet foreign athletes with one thing in common – their love of martial arts,” Rumchong told The Post.
While strong in all aspects of the art, his knees and elbows set him apart from the rest, with opponents bombarded from the first bell.
Rumchong’s father first began teaching him the sport when Rumchong was just five years old and over the years has helped mould him into the fierce competitor we see today.
“There is no opponent tougher than me,” Rumchong insists confidently.
The journey from the young kid starting out in kun Khmer to becoming the Tiger of Battambang was an arduous one, with relentless training and absolute dedication allowing him to hone his craft and become one of the Kingdom’s most influential and respected competitors.
Representing Cambodia at international and local events, he is always a fan favourite.
On top of being an aggressive and talented fighter, Rumchong is a joy to watch in action, his love for the craft plain for all to see.
After more than 165 fights, he is a seasoned veteran and an acknowledged master of the sport.
Rumchong will be fighting at Town Full HDTV studios on Street 1711 in Phnom Penh’s Russey Keo district this Sunday. The fight will be conducted under amended rules – one nine minute round, no judges, and win by knockout.
It’s a great chance to the legend in action live, but the bout will also be screened live on Town Full HDTV.