LIPA CITY — VNS setter Geuel Asia got used to wearing a face mask, which is why he still used one while playing in the Philippine National Volleyball Federation Champions League.
Asia didn’t struggle wearing a mask as he orchestrated the Manileno Spikers’ offense that pushed Go for Gold Air Force — composed of national team players — to its limits before falling short in the fifth set, 25-23, 23-25, 25-19, 23-25, 11-15, on Monday at the Aquamarine Center.
Although the players inside the court weren’t required by the federation to wear mask while playing, the 25-year-old playmaker opted to wear since he’s already used to it in team practices and also for his safety.
“Choice ko naman kasi nasanay lang ako palaging nakamask. Mahirap na rin mag-risk habang naglalaro,” he said. “(Sanay na kasi) sa training naka-mask ako.”
Asia made 19 excellent sets and scored five and showed no signs of fatigue wearing sports mask in their two-hour battle against Air Force.
“Hindi naman ako nahirapan kasi okay yung mask na ganito,” he said.
Manileno Spikers skipper Geuel Asia hopes to improve team's confidence on the floor
The Manileno Spikers captain was glad that they put up a gallant stand against the core of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games silver medalist behind the valiant efforts of his attackers R-vin Gavan, John San Andres, Vince Abrot and Rwenzmel Taguibolos.
“Siguro maganda yung naging gising ng teammates ko kaya ganun yung laro. Actually medyo nalate na kami magstart ng training kaya di namin alam kung lano gagalaw sa loob so ginawa namin kung ano yung natural namin na nilalaro ganun lang pinalabas namin,” Asia said.
VNS is now in a must-win situation against its last Pool A game on Wednesday against the idle Basilan for a chance to reach the semifinals.
Asia hopes to improve their net and floor defense and sustain their confidence from their gallant stand in the opener.
“Magiging mindset namin mas tumaas pa yung confidence namin lalo na yung iba naming players na bata kasi sa ganitong liga na mas malaki ngayon lang sila naglaro tas kalaban pa national team,” he said. “I-boost namin paangat kung ano yung kaya namin ilabas, ilaro lang nila.”
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