By TAN AI YENG
The CHEER 2016 trophies are officially up for grabs! Last year’s winning teams – the Cyrens, Rayvens and Mickeymitez – have returned their trophies ahead of this year’s CHEER Finals, where Malaysia’s top cheerleading teams will be facing off once again.
CHEER, Malaysia’s biggest cheerleading competition, will be held on Aug 27 at Tropicana City Mall, and the teams are raring to go.
Despite having to hand their beloved High School Senior All-Girl trophy back, Cyrens captain Cassandra Yang, 16, was confident her team stands a good chance of holding it aloft for the seventh time at the Finals.
“We are looking forward to the Finals,” said Yang, whose team represents SM Sri Kuala Lumpur. “We’ve been training hard for months!”
To defend their title, the Cyrens have been training four times a week, for two and a half hours every session.
On top of their gruelling training schedule, the cheerleaders still have to keep up with their studies as the competition will be smack in the middle of their exam schedule.
The team is working hard to strike a balance between cheerleading and academics, which is why they’ve started scaling down their training sessions to make sure they have enough time to study.
“But I believe we’ll still do well. I believe in my team – they’re smart and have good time management,” she said.
Che Zhi May, 15, captain of SM Sri Kuala Lumpur’s junior team, Rayvens, also said her team faced a challenge in balancing their cheer training and schoolwork.
However, Che is confident her team will perform even better under pressure.
“By keeping the team in high spirits, I believe we can hit a perfect routine,” she said.
On the other hand, last year’s Co-Ed champion team, the Mickeymitez from SMK Damansara Jaya, won’t be taking part in CHEER 2016, according to team captain Yeong Zhi Yuan, 16.
“One of our teammates is moving to New York, so we won’t be able to perform at our best,” he said, adding that cheerleading isn’t only about winning titles.
“I believe taking part in competitions is just a small part of the process. What’s most important is the time we spend bonding with each other throughout training.
“We’ve learnt to enjoy the entire journey instead of just focusing on the end results.”
In the past, most cheerleaders’ journeys would end when they finish secondary school, but that’s about to change this year as CHEER is introducing a new division – University Co-Ed Elite!
So get ready for even bigger stunts and louder cheers as Malaysia’s university teams make their CHEER debuts. We’re sure they’ll make a huge impression.
Admission to all CHEER events is free, so do join us this Saturday.
CHEER 2016 is organised by R.AGE and supported by the Youth and Sports Ministry and Education Ministry. Grabcar is the official transportation partner. More info at fb.com.my/thestarCHEER.
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