William Cheung, Leung Ting


Brown Belt
MTS Alumni
Nov 15, 2002
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Sacramento, California, USA
Hey All,

Until the early 90's the West pretty much thought that all Wing Chun came through Yip Man. When he died it was unclear who was his successor as the claim was voiced by more than one individual. The William Cheung fight with Boztepe was short. Boztepe was 17 at the time. And the fight was an attack from behind. It's my understanding that Cheung was also jet lagged and sick as well having just flown in from Australia to Germany that day. There's sound to the video and it seemed to me like neither was speaking the same language either, German vs English (Australian English). It was a short fight and you used to be able to see it on Leung Ting's site or some site linked to it.

In the early 90's several other branches of Wing Chun came to be known and their legitimacy was unquestionable. Their histories went back hundreds of years. Complete with pictures and names of students. So the whole Yip Man successor thing died down. The battle for legitimacy between them all has calmed down.

I live in LA and so does Boztepe. I fought one of his guys at the Dog Brothers in 2000 and his student was pretty good. He was also a very nice guy. The Wing Chun community has become much more friendly to the different branches of Wing Chun since other styles came into the mainstream. This is for the better.

The principles of Wing Chun are pretty much the same, no matter what style. The difference lies in training methodology and in the techniques in the forms. Some of the stances and transitions are very different in the forms between WC and VT. I think this is where the Center/Central Line divergence comes from. In one style, the Gu Lao style of Wing Chun, they don't use the forms at all but rather postures instead.


Brown Belt
Jun 30, 2002
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Originally posted by bart
Hey All,

The William Cheung fight with Boztepe was short. Boztepe was 17 at the time. And the fight was an attack from behind. It's my understanding that Cheung was also jet lagged and sick as well having just flown in from Australia to Germany that day. There's sound to the video and it seemed to me like neither was speaking the same language either, German vs English (Australian English). It was a short fight and you used to be able to see it on Leung Ting's site or some site linked to it.

saw the clip too. it can be found still on the net. looked like two drunks going at it. clumsy and hapless is how'd you describe it.

Botzepe gets a bad headlock on Cheung and throws some weak looking punches- they flop to the ground- Botzepe throws a few more weak punches- cheung kicks around with no apparent defense ---it's over. i'm sure Yipman would have been proud.

Cheung in interview said that he was caught off guard, that he was jumped from behind-- i'm sure all true- I guess he learned how the rest of us feel when we get in it on the street.



Phil Elmore

Master of Arts
Mar 30, 2002
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One neat feature of the tape is the fact that William Cheung tries repeatedly to hook a leg up over Emin, a maneuver that is perfectly logical given the situation he was in. He's wearing socks only, though, if I remember correctly -- and so he can't get any traction on the gymnasium floor each time he tries.

It's a great lesson about the effects of terrain on a fight.


2nd Black Belt
Aug 3, 2002
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I agree with one of the posters here. YipMan must be very proud. *sigh*


Senior Master
Founding Member
MTS Alumni
Sep 1, 2001
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Long ago, I saw a slightly longer version of that video that actually showed Boztepe and Cheung before they got into a clinch, which is where the bullshido video starts. Haven't been able to locate it since. It also had slightly better quality, such that you could easily tell the two apart.


Phil Elmore

Master of Arts
Mar 30, 2002
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It's not a question of who is the "real" successor or not. Yip Man taught two of his sons, if I remember correctly, Yip Chun being one of them. When seeking a teacher you can learn from anyone who learned the system from someone else; the question is, in which lineage do you prefer to train? There are differences from lineage to lineage. Harping on the politics helps no one, however.

Phil Elmore

Master of Arts
Mar 30, 2002
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You're not going to find two people who agree on one "correct" lineage, no.


so.. I'm from LT Wing Tsun linage (here in Austria) and i also think this fight was stupid. From what I've read on Kungfumagazins forum there have been diffrent versions of the story - about who challanged who. But who cares - i think all Wing Chunnnners should help each others and friendly cross hands (do you say like this in english). About cheung and boztempe: from what i've heared both are very good, but what you see on the vid is ridiculous and and the fight was a defamation for all wing chun.

just my 2 cents...



Hot Sauce

There are a couple of versions of what happened. The video of the fight doesn't show how the fight beginns so there is no ultimate truth here. Anyway here is another version of what happened:

William Cheung challenged everyone to duel him anytime, anywhere. He also insulted a couple of dead people including the late Bruce Lee. When he insulted Leung Ting, Boztepe decided to visit Cheung when he was in Germany to hold a seminar. Boztepe went there with a few other WT practitioners and said something like " ....I accept you challenge" while showing the magazine where open challange was written to Cheung and then counted to three and started to fight.

I've heard that Cheung's story has changed a couple of times, first he was attacked from behind, then it changed to that he was wearing slippy shoes and then he didn't want to fight.

Hot Sauce

I found this on another forum...

I must say I still think that he got what he asked for...

In reply of the William Cheung Interview Feb 1996 Mitcham Kwoon.

The following letter appears in Martial Arts Magazines

3, Nullah Rd., 2C/fl., Kowloon,
Hong Kong Tel 3-816044

Dear Sir,

RE: Point Three of the minutes of the 11th General Meeting

Recently we have received many letters and complaints about a person
called William Cheung who has distorted many affairs with ulterior motive.
As the board of directors of the Ving Tsun Athletic Association -- the
general association of the WHOLE Ving Tsun (Wing Tsun / Wing Chun) system,
which was founded by the late Grandmaster Yip Man and most of his senior
students since 1976, we have the responsibility to clarify the following

1/ William Cheung has NEVER been regarded by anyone of his fellow-students
as the grandmaster or the leader of the whole Wing Chun Clan.

2/ NOBODY is recognized as the so-called "No 1 student of Grandmaster
Yip Man" and we have NEVER heard of William Cheung as the "No. 1 Fighter
of the Wing Chun Style".

3/ "Footwork" in the Wing Chun System is regarded as a most advanced
technique. We do not deny that some of the students of Grandmaster
Yip Man did not learn the whole system, but it is NOT TRUE that
William Cheung is the ONLY person to have ever learnt the entire
Wing Chun System" as what he announced in his advertisement.

4/ There have NEVER been any techniques in our system called "DIM-MAK" or
"Disabling Pressure Points", NOR any so-called "Missing Techniques" since
the creation of the Wing Chun System by Ng Mui.

5/ When Grandmaster Yip Man taught the techniques to his students he asked
NO-ONE "to take an oath not to reveal the secret to anyone during his life
time." He taught according to the potential of his students, teaching
the most advanced techniques to the most talented ones.

In the mid of 50's there had been a kid called William Cheung who had studied
in Grandmaster Yip Man's school for a few years intermittently and left
Hong Kong when he was 18 years old, and since then had become isolated from
his instructor and all the other fellow-students. During his short training
he surely gained the wrong impression in thinking that Grandmaster Yip Man
never taught the advanced techniques to students other than himself. And yet
we do not know how much William Cheung really learned himself.

It is regrettable that his lies have gone so far (i.e he told the
reporters that Grandmaster Yip Man had taught only him the so-called
"traditional Wing Chun", but had taught all his other students the
"modified Wing Chun").

However, any average person could easily analyze his techniques and see
this statement must be a lie. It is unthinkable that Grandmaster Yip Man
would choose to cheat all the students except one impudent kid, who actually
had little respect for him!

We feel sorry to have such an ignorant person in out clan, We want
to establish our position: we have NEVER AGREED with his Crazy
self-promotion, though we do understand his motive in casting himself as the
"Superman" in the William Cheung's Wing Chun System.

Yours faithfully,

The Board Of Directors and Attendance in the meeting of clarification
the distored affairs.

Wong Shun Leung (Chairman)
Leung Ting (Vice Chairman)
Tong Chao Chi (Vice Chairman)
Lok Yiu (President)
Yip Ching (Vice President)
Ho Kam Ming (Vice President)
Siu Yuk Man (Secretary)
Chan Tak Chiu (Treasurer)
Tsui Sheung Tim (Membership Management)
Koo Sang (Membership Management)
Lee Wai Chi (Public Relation)
Victor Kan (attendance)
Yip Chun (attendance)

William Cheung's response to a letter from the
leading masters of Wing Chun. This version comes from Australasian fighting Arts
Vol 10 nr 3.


Firstly, I want to point out that the statement by the Ving Tsun Athletic
Association in their letter that the "the association was founded by the late
grandmaster Yip Man and most of his senior student since 1976" is not true,
because Yip Man died in 1971. So he couldn't have founded the Ving Tsun
Athletic Association in 1976 as claimed.
I shall attempt to answer their letter point by point:
(1) I am the leader of the Traditional Wing Chun because I am the only person
who inherited the whole Traditional system of Wing Chun. Furthermore, I also
know the modified version thoroughly, and know that it is inferior to the
Traditional system. I therefore proclaim myself the Grandmaster of the
Traditional Wing Chun Kung Fu. If anyone does not think so, he can come and
see me and I will be more than too pleased to show him.
(2) I was the only person that Grandmaster Yip Man chose to carry on the
whole Traditional Wing Chun system. I am the best fighter in the Wing Chun
Style. This was acknowledged by the late Bruce Lee, and recognized by many
famous masters of other styles. I anyone needs proof, I would only be too
pleased to oblige.
(3) Nobody - I say nobody - was taught the traditional Wing Chun footwork but
me. I Leung Ting and company knew it, they would be showing their students. It
is like the case of the Bil Jee form. Nobody knew the proper form except me
and that is why they have been telling people that the Bil Jee form was too
dangerous even to show it; in order to cover up the fact that they don't know
it. I was the first WEing Chun master to put Bil Jee in a book so that
everyone can learn the correct version.
(4)Dim Mak or disabling Pressure Point Techniques was passed on to me, along
with the whole Traditional system of Wing Chun. If you have read my article on
the subject you might understand how it works. However, ther is no medicine for
ignorance; Leung Ting and company deny the existence because they don't know
it. At least this time they admit their ignorance. My book on Dim Mak, or
Disabling Pressure Point Techniques, will be on the market soon. Keep your
eyes open. In china there is a Kung Fu monk who could stand upside down on one
or two hands. Some people can break a half dozen inch boards with a punch.
Maybe there are people who can stand on a dozen eggs. I can stand on two
without breaking them. All these can be called tricks if you like, but the
fact is that I am still "the best Wing Chun Fighter". I dare anyone to prove
(5) It is irrelevant to argue whether Yip Man had made be take an oath before
he taught me the complete Traditional Wing Chun System, because no-one else
was privileged to witness it. The fact is, that after 36 years of training in
Wing Chun, I have the confidence to say that I am the most knowledgeable
master in the Wing Chun System and I am the best fighter, and I am willing to
prove it to them at any time, anywhere. Unlike Leung Ting and company, as
shown in the photo, you only have to take one look at them to realize that
none of them look that part of martial artists. I could safely say that none
of them have done any hard training in recent years. They certainly don't look
very impressive!
In the 50's I was a kid . . . so was Bruce Lee . . . full of enthusiasm and
energy. We learned Wing Chun together and we were determined to make a name
for Wing Chun and ourselves. And we did. In the 50's Leung Ting was still "in
his diapers". He didn't learn Wing Chun until the 1960's from Leung Chun,(Yip
Man's student) of his own admission. He is one generation behind Bruce and me.
However, according to the article published in "Secrets of Kung Fu" Vol 2
1977, hundred of Kung Fu masters in Hong Kong - including Leung Chun, Yip
Shun, Tsui Sheng tin, and Wong Shun Leung - denounced Leung Ting in very
strong terms (I have enclosed copies) Leung Shun was reportedly saying that
Leung Ting wasn't learning from him, but from his student Jah Bak. This makes
Leung Ting two generation behind Bruce Lee and I.
And Leung Ting's claim that he was Yip Man's closed door student is on what
grounds? In the 60's, Yip Man was a heavy drug user, and did not enjoy very
good health. There was no way that Yip Man could have taught anyone in that
state of health. Even his own sons, Yip Chun and Yip Ching, who came to Hong
Kong in the 1960's, had to be content to train with Yip Man's senior students.
Wing Chun is a system which was developed for one to be able to master in
three to four years. Grandmaster Yip Man, from age of twelve to sixteen,
learned four years part time the modified version of Wing Chun with Chan Wah
Shun and, from age 17, he learned 2 years traditional Wing Chun from Leung Buk
(Leung Jung's son) in Hong Kong. Wong Shun Leung only learned modified Wing
Chun for three years part time and he began teaching in early 1955. Loh Liu
probably started teaching after only 2 years part time training in the
modified version.
I studied Wing Chun for 4 and one half years part time in the modified
version, and then 2 and one half years full time in the traditional version,
when I was living with Yip Man. I learned the modified version as well as the
traditional version. After I completed my learning, I have continued to
practice for a further 28 years, and I still practice daily.
From these factors you can see that I am the most qualified practitioner in
both modified and traditional versions of Wing Chun Kung Fu. I proclaim myself
the most knowledgeable master and the best fighter in the whole Wing Chun
I would like to close off with a very famous Chinese proverb : "Practicing
Kung Fu is like paddling upstream - if you don't go forward, you must go
backward, and seldom you stay in the same spot". It is no surprise to find the
whole group in the printed photo appear to have gone so far backward that I
would be ashamed to be associated with them.

William Cheung


(The photo he refers to has in it Leung Ting, Wong Shun Leung, Tong Chao Chi,
Lok Yiu, Yip Ching, Ho Kam Ming, Siu Yuk Man, Chan Tak Chiu, Tsui Shun Tin,
Lee Wai Chi, Victor Kan, and Yip Chun. He also supplied a photo of himself
as a child in the same room as Yip Man)

The Mark

Orange Belt
Mar 7, 2004
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To the best of my knowledge, from talking with many WC masters and sudents of various lineages, Yip Man did not declare a successor. I have heard his intent was for his sons to take over but nothing formal was ever proclaimed.

Several people claim they were told by Yip Man they were the ones. Maybe he did tell them. He was known to have a sense of humor, and not always a nice one.

I believe if he were to have delcared a successor it would have been the sons or someone that studied with him for a long time and/or understood the art the best-to Yip Man's standards not ours or other students.

Some good posts here. Glad to see it hasn't started a flame war and people are discussing a touchy subject with intelligence.


Hot Sauce said:
I found this on another forum...


Master Black Belt
Oct 16, 2003
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Milledgeville Ga
I think its kind of funnny to fight over who is the succesor. Kind of forgets about the other liniages of Wing Chun doesn't it. I don't think i speelled have of the words I typed right but I got to dash so oh well.


First I want to say thanks for this forum.

Second I want to agree that yes we are all Wing Chun'ers and this bickering between the students of Yip Man (and their students) is stupid.

I had just recently signed up for the IWCA forum without knowing about this disupte. I did this to answer someone's question about the students of traditional wing chun (myself) doing the circular step at the beginning of our Shil Nim Tao. I kindly replied what style I studied and my masters name and told them I did not know why we did that and further didn't know there was a different method. (I have only been studying for 6 months). I also indicated that is was very cool that Grandmaster Cheung made the cover of Black Belt this month.

This person I replied to asked for more information so I posted the link to Cheung's Better Life website and indicated that the only circular foot motion I have studied in our style was the upward circular leg sweep (aside from footwork) and I didn't know if the circular step in the beginning of our form was used for anything else.

Well I returned to that forum today and they had deleted my second post and brazenly posted this -

go to a william cheung website or message board for info on him.

sorry, but TJF (administrator) has clearly stated many times lately not to discuss other masters and put up links regarding them.

sorry to be harsh but drop the subject of william cheung in personal terms.

Then locked the thread so it could not added too. I am assuming TJF is Master Jim Fung.

I was none to happy about this as I was taught from the beginning to show respect to all other arts and masters and to realize that there is not an "ultimate martial art". Now after reading this thread I realize why this action may have been taken and it makes me less happy. Can't we all just get along?

Just because I am a student of Traditional Wing Chun (more because of my location than choice) I see no reason I should not be able to communicate and exchange information with members of other lineages (and other arts). This is also what I was taught from my Sifu. We practice in the same space as a group of jujitsu folks and some kempo folks and never have had any problems from what I understand. There is even some cross-teaching between the sifu, sensai, and jujitsu instructors. Maybe I am just lucky to have an enviroment like this?

Needless to say I was happy to find this forum with a smart group of folks who can discuss these things intelligently.