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Pictures | Sat Sep 14, 2019 | 8:40am EDT

Dambe boxers thrill crowds in Nigeria

A boxer reacts as his opponent scores a right-hand blow on his face during a brutal martial art of Dambe at a weekend match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria June 30, 2019. A Nigerian production company is seeking to turn Dambe, a traditional martial art associated with the Hausa people of West Africa, into a sport with a global audience.

REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A boxer reacts as his opponent scores a right-hand blow on his face during a brutal martial art of Dambe at a weekend match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria June 30, 2019. A Nigerian production company is seeking to turn Dambe, a traditional martial art...more

A boxer reacts as his opponent scores a right-hand blow on his face during a brutal martial art of Dambe at a weekend match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria June 30, 2019. A Nigerian production company is seeking to turn Dambe, a traditional martial art associated with the Hausa people of West Africa, into a sport with a global audience. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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Dambe warriors fight in the ring in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. Matches last three rounds, which have no time limits. A round ends when there is no activity, a participant or official halts the round, or a fighter's hand, knee or body touches the ground.

REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Dambe warriors fight in the ring in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. Matches last three rounds, which have no time limits. A round ends when there is no activity, a participant or official halts the round, or a fighter's hand, knee or body touches the...more

Dambe warriors fight in the ring in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. Matches last three rounds, which have no time limits. A round ends when there is no activity, a participant or official halts the round, or a fighter's hand, knee or body touches the ground. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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Youths gather during a weekend match in Dei-Dei suburb, Abuja, Nigeria. Boxers wrap their dominant hand in cloth and knotted cord to strike, while their other hand is held with the palm open, to grab or hold their opponent. Fighters can also use their legs to kick.

REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Youths gather during a weekend match in Dei-Dei suburb, Abuja, Nigeria. Boxers wrap their dominant hand in cloth and knotted cord to strike, while their other hand is held with the palm open, to grab or hold their opponent. Fighters can also use...more

Youths gather during a weekend match in Dei-Dei suburb, Abuja, Nigeria. Boxers wrap their dominant hand in cloth and knotted cord to strike, while their other hand is held with the palm open, to grab or hold their opponent. Fighters can also use their legs to kick. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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A Dambe boxer pours water on his head during a round break in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A Dambe boxer pours water on his head during a round break in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A Dambe boxer pours water on his head during a round break in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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Young Dambe warriors prepare for a fight at the Dambe arena in Lagos. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Young Dambe warriors prepare for a fight at the Dambe arena in Lagos. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Young Dambe warriors prepare for a fight at the Dambe arena in Lagos. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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A crowd gathers around the ring to watch a Dambe fight in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A crowd gathers around the ring to watch a Dambe fight in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A crowd gathers around the ring to watch a Dambe fight in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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A Dambe boxer punches his opponent in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A Dambe boxer punches his opponent in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A Dambe boxer punches his opponent in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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A spectator reacts while watching a match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A spectator reacts while watching a match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A spectator reacts while watching a match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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Warriors fight in the Dambe arena on the outskirts of Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Warriors fight in the Dambe arena on the outskirts of Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Warriors fight in the Dambe arena on the outskirts of Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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Implements used by warriors are seen on display at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Implements used by warriors are seen on display at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Implements used by warriors are seen on display at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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A warrior poses for a photograph at the Dambe arena on the outskirts of Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

A warrior poses for a photograph at the Dambe arena on the outskirts of Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

A warrior poses for a photograph at the Dambe arena on the outskirts of Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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Spectators watch a boxer knocks his opponent off his feet in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Spectators watch a boxer knocks his opponent off his feet in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Spectators watch a boxer knocks his opponent off his feet in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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Aljanin Yahaya, 28, a Dambe warrior from the Arewa house, speaks during an interview with Reuters in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Aljanin Yahaya, 28, a Dambe warrior from the Arewa house, speaks during an interview with Reuters in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Aljanin Yahaya, 28, a Dambe warrior from the Arewa house, speaks during an interview with Reuters in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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A Dambe warrior splashes water on his teammates before a fight at the arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

A Dambe warrior splashes water on his teammates before a fight at the arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

A Dambe warrior splashes water on his teammates before a fight at the arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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Dambe warriors fight in the ring in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Dambe warriors fight in the ring in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Dambe warriors fight in the ring in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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A  warrior poses for a photograph after a fight at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

A warrior poses for a photograph after a fight at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

A warrior poses for a photograph after a fight at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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A local musician performs during a Dambe match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A local musician performs during a Dambe match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

A local musician performs during a Dambe match in Dei-Dei, Abuja, Nigeria. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
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Chidi Anyina, co-founder of the Dambe warriors, speaks during an interview with Reuters at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Chidi Anyina, co-founder of the Dambe warriors, speaks during an interview with Reuters at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

Chidi Anyina, co-founder of the Dambe warriors, speaks during an interview with Reuters at the Dambe arena in Lagos, Nigeria. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
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