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Last Updated: Monday, 13 October, 2003, 18:05 GMT 19:05 UK
Dancers divided over football
Ballet Russe
Fourteen members of the company are from Russia
Dancers with a Swansea based ballet company have been left in a quandary following the draw for the Euro 2004 play-offs.

Members of Ballet Russe say it will be a difficult choice deciding who to support when Wales play Russia home and away next month.

Fourteen of the 15 strong company are from Russia but have been living in Wales since they set up their base at Swansea's Grand Theatre four years ago.

Director Mikhail Vorona said all the male members of the company were football mad but had been left with mixed feelings by Monday's draw.

We will have a team to support in Portugal whoever wins
Mikhail Vorona

"We just spoke yesterday about the possibility of Russia playing Wales," he said.

"I was absolutely shocked today when I saw that we were going to play together.

Phone calls

"It is difficult for us to know who to support.

"If Russia come through then we will be happy but we will also be happy if Wales come through.

"It's a shame because we would like to see both teams go to Portugal."

Mr Vorona said he had yet to speak to friends and family back home but he was expecting phone calls from some looking for tickets.

Mikhail Vorona
Mikhail Vorona was hoping both teams would qualify

"We will try and go to the game in Cardiff," he said.

"It could be a good chance for family from Russia to come over here and see us and the football.

"There will be a lot of interest from the supporters and media in Russia. Football and ice hockey are the two big sports.

"People there know where Wales is but many think of it as part of Britain and not a football country on its own.

"But I'm sure there will be a lot of Russian supporters coming to Wales."

Wrap up warm

For Welsh fans travelling for the away leg Mr Vorona had one piece of advice - wrap up warm.

"The temperature in mid-November in Moscow can be as low as minus 20c," he added.

"But they will have a warm welcome from the Russian football fans.

"The problem with Russian football is one game the team will play a really poor game and the next play really well.

"Supporting Russia you never know what to expect.

"I would not like to say who will win. We will have a team to support in Portugal whoever wins."

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