RHENZ Abando is eager to move on after the poaching drama that gripped University of Santo Tomas over the past days, reiterating that his sole focus is now on basketball.
The 21-year-old transferee was benched during the Tigers' game against University of the Philippines on Wednesday, which became the talk of the town after it was confirmed by UST officials that two rival schools are after Abando.
Abando, however, said he had no plan of leaving the Espana school all along.
"Wala naman talaga akong balak na lumipat," the UST high-flyer told SPIN Life in an online interview. "Alam ko naman 'yung totoo kaya di ako nagpapa-apekto."
According to school officials, Abando committed to play out his college carer at UST during a meeting with Tigers coach Aldin Ayo and UST Institute of Physical Education and Athletics (IPEA) director Fr. Jannel Abogado, OP on Thursday afternoon.
Abando is already back on practice and will join the Tigers as they compete against the National University on Sunday at the Ynares Sports Center in Antipolo.
Abando declined to say more, saying he looks forward to helping in the Tigers' push to the playoffs in the UAAP Season 82 men's basketball tournament.
On Tuesday, he also shared to SPIN Life that he is beyond thankful for the opportunity handed him by UST.
Meanwhile, some netizens shared their insights over the issue on social media:
User @haroldmfulo said: "If rumours are to be true, abando being recruited by other schools, its about time UAAP act on suspending the said schools. Tapping a player from other schools should be a serious violation, especially during the season."
"If Rhenz Abando jumps ship, we will all call him Rhenz Abandon," said @dino_mars.
Growling Tigress alum Sisi Rondina also weighed in: