The story of Duncan Leung — childhood friend of Bruce Lee and disciple of Wing Chun master Yip Man — is valuable not only for the insights it offers into Chinese martial arts but also for its portrayal of the lost Hong Kong of the 1950s and 1960s. Reading Ken Ing’s Wing Chun Warrior, which chronicles Leung’s Kung Fu escapades, will be a jarring revelation to anyone familiar with the manic but orderly and largely peaceful city of seven million people that is Hong Kong today. The city described by Ing is a place where Kung Fu practitioners wielded eight-chop knives in the streets and literally battled their way from one martial arts studio to another to prove their fighting prowess.
… As Ing tells the story, Lee may have been Yip Man’s most famous pupil, but Leung underwent more intensive training with the great man — four years of daily private lessons that started in 1955, when Leung was 13. During this time, Leung virtually forgot about regular schooling and devoted himself to learning Wing Chun from the master, training six hours a day, seven days a week.
… Soon the eager student began applying his lessons on the streets and in the Kung Fu studios of Hong Kong, and this is where Ing’s book is hard to put down. At one point, a young Leung comes across two triads (underworld figures) raining blows on a defenseless old man outside the long-defunct London Theater in Kowloon. His Wing Chun principles and reflexes immediately kick in, and the two toughs are quickly dispatched.
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