37 Sports Confirmed for 32nd SEA Games

SEA Games

Vath Chamroeun, Secretary-General of the National Olympic Committee of Cambodia has confirmed that there will be 37 events at the upcoming 32nd SEA Games, which is being marketed as Cambodia 2023.

This makes a slight decrease from the 40 sports hosted at the 2021 SEA Games which were held in Vietnam.

As well as the standard sports, Cambodia as the host nation has opted to include three traditional Khmer sports, namely Ouk Chaktrang (Cambodian chess), and the two martial arts of Bokator and the controversial Kun Khmer.

Cambodia hoping for medals

According to Vath Chamroeun the inclusion of the three sports would potentially give Cambodia a great chance at getting medals, although strong competition was expected in all three disciplines.

Both Ouk Chaktrang and Kun Khmer have strong regional followings, and while Bokator is less popular, five nations, namely Laos, Myanmar, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines are slated to take part.

The Kun Khmer Question

Most controversial of the three sports though is perhaps Kun Khmer, which has caused a diplomatic spat with Thai authorities who refer to the sport as Muoy Thai. The argument has been so intense that Thailand have threatened to boy cot the games if a compromise is not reached.

To read about the Thai boycott click here.

The row over the naming of the sport is one of many currently ongoing between the two Kingdoms about the 32nd SEA Games, with Thailand also claiming that Cambodia are overcharging them for broadcasting rights for the games.

This article is adapted from BPVE SPORT Cambodia, reported and edited from the great team – Cambodia Sports Review.


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