Alaina Kwan and Kylie Dickson To Represent Belarus At World Championships
Rising U.S. senior elite gymnasts Alaina Kwan and Kylie Dickson are taking an unexpected route to the 2015 World Championships--they will be competing for the country of Belarus, according to International Gymnast Magazine Online. Kwan and Dickson train at All Olympia Gymnastics Center in Los Angeles, and after the Secret U.S. Classic, they began pursuing their dreams of competing internationally.
At Classics, Kwan finished ninth and Dickson finished 11th, but with huge competition in the senior field, their respectable performances did not qualify them for the P&G Championships in August. It was then that they turned their focus to obtaining dual citizenship to compete for Belarus at the 2015 World Championships. The duo's coaches Galina Marinova and Artur Akopyan were able to work with their former colleague Nellie Kim--the Belarusian Gymnastics Federation vice president--in order to coordinate the process.
Kwan and Dickson are very excited about the opportunity of competing at the World Championships. Dickson said, "Even though I'm not from Belarus it's really cool to represent a country at the World Championships, and do the best that you can for that country."
Kwan said at first she wasn't sure about the idea, "but once the idea sank in, it showed me how much I can do and see. I can travel the world and experience everything, but just representing a different name. So I'd rather go for the experience than for the name."
The choice to send Kwan and Dickson as the representatives for Belarus is a change from the nominative list previously released. The Belarusian gymnasts on the roster are Sviatlana Lifenka and Valeryia Tsekhmistrenka. See the full Worlds nominative roster here.
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