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Local dancers eye global Queen’s Cup contest

Jan. 16, 2020 2 min read

MASERU – The Federation of Lesotho Dance Sport has set eyes on hosting the Queen’s Cup of the World Dance Sport Federation (WDSF) Open Championships, with initial preparations scheduling the event for September 26 to 27.

Federation PRO, William Nthejane, says they have submitted their bid to host the international competition to the WSDF and are awaiting a response, an answer that will allow them to begin issuance of invitations to particular countries for participation.

He said the Queen’s Cup contest is an international event whose panel of judges is drawn from nominated judges from Europe and some part of the African continent.

He added they were willing to work hard towards hosting more world-class competitions that will draw a large number of European countries as they only managed to lure Italy and Estonia in their dance competition in 2017.

Nthejane said the sport and its appreciation by local dancers has grown in the country over the years, since its official recognition in Lesotho in 2002; and that to date they managed to train around 30 trainers and 10 judges to ensure development “after spending 12 years hiring trainers and judges from neighbouring countries, especially South Africa.”

Nthejane noted the sport’s progress in the country has been a difficult phase since its introduction, caused mainly by the unavailability of individuals with necessary skills to advance and promote it.

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He said they only launched judges and coaching courses for local in 2014, and that with the enthusiasm shown since then the sport has taken root across the country with the number of dancer, coaches and adjudicators increasing.

“We have really made strides over the years; our standard has improved compared to past decades. We now even have world ranked athletes,” he said.

“Currently Lesotho is being recognized in this sport worldwide unlike in the past years when we were considered minnows. We currently have world ranking athletes and I am one of them,” said a proud Nthejane.

He, however, indicated progress made will not lead them to rest on their laurels, but that “we are still willing to improve our standard even more by increasing the number of professionals in this sport as we currently have one professional in the country.”

“We have quite number of reputable dancers and champs in their own right but we do not have a satisfying number of professionals, and we have to work on increasing that number of professionals,” said Nthejane

Meanwhile, Nthejane further revealed the federation has plans to introduce dance sport into national high schools, and that a number of primary schools have already joined the bandwagon.

“Introducing the sport at high school level is critical because you will find that we recruit kids in primary schools and they fail to continue with the sport when they reach high schools because the sport is not there,” he observed.

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