MALLE, Belgium – The final day of competition at the World Para Dance Sport Championships saw some stunning performances and titles defended in a phenomenal day of dancing in Malle, Belgium on Sunday.
Filipino duo Rhea Marquez and Jun Julius Obero defended their combi freestyle class 2 in dramatic circumstances, drawing rapturous applause from the crowd for their performance to Roxette’s It Must Have Been Love. The win for the pair was especially impressive with Marquez struggling with an injured shoulder throughout the event, which was especially bothering her on Sunday. The other medalists were Kiyomi Otake and Koichi Omae of Japan, and Kazakh pair Malika Muktarova and Vladislav Sahno.
It was a Ukrainian double in the combi freestyle class 1 with Natalia Chekhonatska and Pavlo Ivliushkin just beating out fellow Ukraine duo Veronika Pedchenko and Valeriy Bevzyuk. The Eastern European podium was completed by Kazakhstan pair Aidana Beglenova and Ardak Otorbayev.
Ukrainian success continued in the women’s freestyle class 2 with Olena Chynka managing a beautiful performance to claim the gold easily, winning her fourth gold of the event. Mexican Haydee Guadalupe Guerrero Reynosa managed her silver while young Kazakh dancer Malika Muktarova delighted the crowd with her performance of The Weather Girls’ It’s Raining Men earning bronze for her performance.
Mexico continued to be a strong force in the singles freestyle dances, with Jesus Yermain Angeles Fernandez defending his title in the men’s single freestyle class 2. The win reflected his diversity of dance, having won in 2015 with hip hop, switching to jazz in 2017. It was a tight finish with Fernandez finishing just ahead of Japanese dancer Koichi Omae, while another medal came to Ukraine with Ivan Sivak finishing in third.
There was an interesting performance in the women’s single freestyle class 1 with Kazakh dancer Karlygash Tynabekova doing a risky Bollywood performance which was rewarded by the judges with the gold. Ukraine continued its impressive form in the freestyle performances as Natalia Chekhonatska and Snejana Kernichnaya finishing out the podium.
There was a Belarusian double in the combi standard events, with Iryna Makeichyk and Yauhen Yarmoshka winning in class 1, with Ukrainians Illona Slugovyna and Andrii Tovstyi in second and Kazakhs in third with Beglenova and Otorbayev. For the Kazakhs it was their second bronze medal not just of the meet, but of just the day.
In class 2 Hanna Harchakova claimed her second straight title, partnering with Roman Usmanov to win all five standard dances for a big win. Korean duo Juhee Hwang and Kangwon Cho came second with Slovakian Maria Dutkova and Martin Solc rounding out the podium.
Hong Kong’s Ma Wah Keung won the men’s class 1 freestyle with Slovenian Amir Alibabic and Korean Daeson Kim completing the podium.