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Phuket cheerleading squad to take on Asia’s best

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Phuket cheerleading squad to take on Asia’s best | Thaiger

PHUKET CITY: A cheerleading squad from Phuket will represent Thailand at the Asian Thailand Cheerleading Invitation 2009 contest at Nimibutr National Stadium in Bangkok on September 19 and 20.

The team, all Phuket Wittayalai School students, will face stiff competition from teams representing Japan, Korea, China, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and other countries in the region.

Although Phuket is a long way from Scandinavia, the team is indeed nicknamed the ‘Vikings’.

They emerged as champions of the Southern Cheerleading Contest in the ‘group stunt mix’ secondary school category.

Team leader Jackri ‘Book’Aekwanich told the Gazette the other members of the six-person squad are fifth-graders ‘Boss’, ‘Dear’, ‘Tem’ and ‘New’ as well as fourth-grader ‘Neung’.

“We are all good friends and we talk to each other about everything. This activity has also helped us to grow together as a group.

“We train a lot, almost every day, but only after school. It doesn’t interfere with our studies. In fact I think it might help us with our school work by giving us a chance to relax.”

As the only girl on the squad, little Savanya ‘Nong New’ Nganvivattavorn is the standout.

She gets hoisted aloft and enjoys a lot of ‘air time’ courtesy of her male companions.

Nong New admits that she does fear getting an injury, but said she ‘is never scared at all’ after a routine begins.

“I feel a bit nervous at the start, but once it gets underway I completely relax,” she said.

“I won’t stop cheerleading because it is so [much] fun and exciting.”

The Asian Thailand Cheerleading Invitation 2009 includes competitions in a number events at the following age groups: kindergarten (under 7); primary school (under 12); secondary school (under 18) and open (over 18 ).

There is also a separate category for international school students.

The winner from each category will represent Asia at the 5th Cheerleading World Championships 2009 in Bremen, Germany on November 28 and 29.

Vikings team coach Piches ‘Nong Big’ Issaroran said he was “100% confident” his squad would win at the upcoming event in the capital.

“We are not afraid of any teams from any country and we are very confident with the way we perform,” he said.

The students practice their routines daily from the finish of their last class until 7 or 8pm, he added.

Thus far, the only financial support the team has been given is a 40,000-baht stipend from the Governor’s Office, he said.

The team would be grateful for any financial support from the private sector, and those wishing to make a donation are asked to contact Mr Piches on 083-024 2502 or Mr Manus on 082-270 9896.

— Kitima Pornmongkhonwat

 

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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