2017 WORLD DANCESPORT GRANDSLAM SERIES
World DanceSport GrandSlam Series Standard Final in Shanghai, China
Last year’s GrandSlam Standard Final will forever be remembered as the last duel between the eternal opponents Simone Segatori – Annette Sudol, GER, and Dmitry Zharkov – Olga Kukikova, RUS, where the former ended up on top. From there it was total dominance by the Russians in four GrandSlam legs of the 2017 Series as well as in the World Championship held here in China back in September. Even though they had made the announcement to change to the Professional Division, Simone and Annette have not yet danced any competitions there and, as the #2 in the GrandSlam Ranking, would be entitled to dance in this Standard “Showdown Shanghai.” But they have not entered. Something which allows another German couple to put in its first appearance in this GrandSlam Standard Final: Tomas Fainsil and Violetta Posmetnaya.
There are four more newcomers to the most exclusive competition in all of DanceSport: Russians Evgeny Nikitin – Anastasia Miliutina and the Chinese wild card couple Qiu Yuming – Wei Liying. They should do their country proud – here too – as they did in the World Standard, where they became the first ever semi-finalists from China. To consider the pre-event favourites and dominators Dmitry Zharkov – Olga Kukikova as shoo-in winners today would be justifiable, if it were not for the mishaps that saw a great dancer (almost) tumble on two occasions last year.