Dancesport aims for sweep of 13 golds

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    EXPECT dancesport to turn into a gold mine during the 30th Southeast Asian Games.

    Dancesport Council of the Philippines president Becky Garcia said their goal is to sweep all 13 events in a bid to help Team Philippines reclaim the overall title in the biennial meet set from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11.

    Garcia said they hired two foreign coaches to help local dancers polish their skills.

    Alina Novak of Poland and Alexander Melnikov of Russia were in the country three weeks ago to train Filipino dancers in the Latin and Standard events.

    Nowak won the Adult Latin Division of the World Championship while Melnikov is a seasoned mentor who preaches the ideals of balance, coordination and movement.

    Filipino dancers also trained in Italy last month, attending a dance camp.

    “I don’t want to predict but if we can go for a sweep, we’ll do it,” said Garcia, whose wards came up with two gold and two silver medals the last time the country hosted the Games in 2005.

    “We had a training camp and we hired foreign coaches. We had a good preparation for the SEA Games and the athletes are ready. We just have to keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best,” Garcia said.

    Leading the local charge are Sean Micha Aranar and Ana Leonila in standard and Michael Angelo Marquez and Stephanie Sabalo in Latin dance.

    Cebu-based dancers Wibert Aunzo and Pearl Marie Caneda will also vie in the Latin event while Mark Jayson Gayon and Marie Joy Renigen (standard) and Yer Lord Ilyum Gabriel and Alyanna Talam (breakdancing) round up the team.