MASERU — A record number of clubs will battle it out for accolades at the fourth edition of Open Queen’s Birthday DanceSport Championship on Saturday.
The annual event, organised by the Lesotho DanceSport Association (Ledasa), is scheduled for Lehakoe Sports Arena.
The Open Queen’s Birthday Dancesport Championship is named after the association’s patron, Queen ’Masenate Mohato Bereng Seeiso.
It is held in June every year at Lehakoe Sports Arena to celebrate her birthday.
Ledasa’s spokesperson Teboho Rakhomo told the Weekender the number of dance clubs participating in the championship had risen to 19, up from last year’s five.
He said participation by countries from the Southern African Development Community had also increased.
Groups from South Africa, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Namibia and Botswana have confirmed their participation, he said.
“This year the competition has shown momentum. Local participating clubs have increased drastically while more visiting countries have shown interest,” Rakhomo added.
Locals Pulumo Nchakha and Senate Letsie will be hoping to defend their title.
The couple won last year’s tournament where Lesotho took the first three positions.
Rakhomo said the Ledasa technical director is working with dancesport coaches from different clubs to prepare for the competition.
“The event is proving to be more competitive every year.
“We have had different winners in the past years but the only Sadc country that has managed to snatch the title from Lesotho was Botswana. But this time around anything can happen,” Rakhomo said.
He however said the event was not making any profits.
“This year our budget is M58 698.53 but it is highly unlikely that we will make enough money to offset it because audience turnout is not large.”
Ledasa has since reduced the admission fee for Saturday’s championship to encourage more people to attend.