Albert Veera Chey may have been born in France, but his heart belongs to Cambodia. The Muay Thai multiple world champion is one of Cambodia’s most accomplished fighters, and now he runs one of France’s most prolific gyms: The Temple Bordeaux.
On 24 November, Albert’s student Omar Samb will take on Kun Khmer legend Keo Rumchong in a 70 kg fight, determining the new Muay Thai Grand Prix Champion.
The championship fight between Samb and Rumchong was not easy for Albert to accept, as he felt divided between France and Cambodia.
“I refused [the fight] like three or four times,” Albert tells Matias Andres from Khmer Komlang. “But we need someone to represent Cambodian. So we took the fight, because it’s good promotion, not only for the fighters, but for Kun Khmer.”
“This is why I accepted the fight: Kun Khmer is going to grow, and people are going to know [about Kun Khmer]. This is a good opportunity for Cambodia to be on the big show.
“Doesn’t matter if win or lose, in the end of the fight, we’re all brothers.”
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Keo Rumchong vs Omar Samb
The championship fight between Omar Samb and Keo Rumchong will take place at the Bataclan Theater in Paris, France on Sunday 24 November, and the Muay Thai Grand Prix show is already sold-out.
Albert has been training Omar Samb for several years and predicts that the fans are in for a treat:
“Omar is very powerful, he has good eyes, and kicks good, he is a real technician,” says Albert. “Keo Rumchong is someone who always goes forward, always punching and kicking – It’s going to be awesome!”
“We’re here for the belt, it’s going to be a big war. No matter what’s going to happen, we’re still friends, we’re still brothers”
With only days left until the MTGP Championship fight, Albert has a clear message for all the Kun Khmer fans watching from Cambodia:
“Please support both of the fighters, if you support Keo Rumchong, it’s all good, if you support Omar Samb and his Cambodian team, that’s good too,” Albert says.
“Just promote Kun Khmer. We’re here for the sport, we’re here for the respect, we’re here for the glory, but Kun Khmer is the thing we put in first.”