By KRISTEL SATUMBAGA
The Philippine Para Dance Sport team is oozing with confidence as it set its sights on the 2021 world championships slated on Nov. 26 to 28 in Ulsan, South Korea.
The team hopes to extend its dominance in the world stage after a successful showing at the 2021 Para Dance Sport Polish Open in Lomianki, Poland recently where they went home with seven gold, four silver and eight bronze medals.
The seven pairs of gold medalists earned berths to the world championships and are optimistic of their chances as far as head coach Genice Bong Marquez is concerned.
“Yung mindset namin nung nandun kami sa Poland, world championships talaga. Kaya mas pagbubutihin pa namin ang preparation namin ngayon,” said Marquez during his guesting in Tuesday’s Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) online forum.
Marquez said they still have more than a month left to hold a bubble training in a facility in Novaliches to polish their routines for the upcoming tournament.
Julius Obero and Rhea Marquez, one of the seven pairs who are seeing action at the worlds, said they hope to win the gold this time after settling for silver in the Combo freestyle 2 and bronze in the Combo Latin 2 events at the 2019 world championship edition in Bonn, Germany.
“Sana magbunga yung mga sakripisyo namin sa training lalo na ngayong pandemic,” said Obero, who has been partners with Rhea for the past six years.
They also hope to continue inspiring differently-abled Filipinos to try the sport.
“Yung purpose namin kapag nagko-compete kami is not just to win medals but also to inspire especially the young generation of para athletes na kaya nating mag-compete,” Marquez said.
Apart from the world championships, the PH team is also set to compete in the cuijk 2022 Para Dance Sport International Competition in Netherlands on April 15 to 17 and the 2022 Continents Cup in St. Petersburg, Russia on May 27 to 29.