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From The WDSF President 01/04/2016

The World Games 2013 Cali © COLDEPORTES Dear Anna, dear Gabriele,

It makes me very proud that the two of you have been selected as the “IWGA Athletes of the Month” for March. If we consider the total number of sportsmen and women competing in the 30+ sports of The World Games, the distinction as the most outstanding is all the more impressive.

Your achievements throughout the five years that you have been dancing together are what earned you one part of this recognition. But it is what you have done during the month of March that accounts for the other, the decisive part.  I was fortunate to be able to witness your performances at the recent GrandSlam Helsinki and I must say that they left me thoroughly impressed. You are fortunate to compete in an era with other couples pushing you to even higher levels of excellence and – as you acknowledge yourself – they definitely bring out the best in you.

It is quite possible that at one point you have considered your win at The World Games 2013 as the most important result of your career. Remember, you danced in Cali, COL, in an atmosphere that both of you will remember for the rest of your lives: a crowd of 17,000 cheering you on from the stands of a bullfighting arena. It can’t get any better than that for Latin dancers! 

But after 21 November 2015, after you won your first World Champion title in Vienna, AUT, your perception may have started to change. Then came your second consecutive win at the GrandSlam Final in Shanghai in December, then the win at the GrandSlam in Helsinki – plus a few victories at Opens in Italy and in Moscow – and that brings us to the middle of March. Itself an important milestone on the road to the next edition of The World Games: 500 days to go until 2017 Wroclaw, POL!

And that is precisely where I hope to see the two of you compete in July of next year, at another fantastic venue: the Centennial Hall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Being the WDSF President and a member of the IWGA board, I had refrained from taking sides in this particular “Athlete of the Month” selection process. But now I can show my happiness without restraints. 

Congratulations Anna and Gabriele!  Well done!

Lukas Hinder
WDSF President