AFTER the Azkals, Gilas, and the Volcanoes, the Bomberinas women's volleyball team is set to get its chance to shine in the international stage.
The Bomberinas, a team made up of standouts in the women's volleyball scene formed against the wishes of the Philippine Volleyball Federation, are being eyed to represent the country in the Southeast Asian zonal qualifiers for the 2014 FIVB Women’s World Volleyball Championship.
Their participation in the Vietnam qualifiers should be another major boost to women's volleyball, which has enjoyed unprecedented popularity thanks to Shakey's V-League and UAAP matches that have drawn record crowds and phenomenal television ratings.
The Bomberinas are currently competing in the Philippine National Games.
The Philippine Olympic Committee on Tuesday was given the authority by the Asian Volleyball Confederation to send a national team to the Vietnam qualifiers - a move seen as a sharp rebuke to the PVF which according to the AVC has declined to send a Philippine representative to the tournament.
However, Romasanta said the deadline for the submission of lineups is on Thursday, making the Bomberinas the country's likely representatives to the June 14-16 tournament since the PVF has no organized national team at this time.
“We are pressed for time. The POC and the PSC (Philippine Sports Commission) doesn’t want to be sanctioned by the Asian federation,” Romasanta said.
PVF president Gener Dungo declined comment when contacted by Spin.ph.
The Bomberinas were formed after a series of tryouts initiated by Dr. Ian Laurel, a PVF board member who has since been suspended by Dungo for the unsanctioned tryouts. The formation of the team was also backed by a company led by AVC development chairman Tats Suzara.
Among the members of the team are skipper Angeli Tabaquero, sisters Dindin and Jaja Santiago, veteran Rubie De Leon, Honey Tubino, Rosemarie Vargas, Sandra Delos Santos, and libero Angelique Dionela.
Laurel said the current team, which has continued its practices despite the absence of PVF recognition, will form the core of the squad set to be sent to the Vietnam qualifiers.
“Most likely, they will form the core of the team. But we will have the reinforcements. We will finalize the lineup,” Laurel told Spin.ph on Tuesday.
Laurel said they have already contacted other players that can beef up the lineup, but declined to mention names for the moment.
“Meron na pero ayoko na munang sabihin. We want to present it ng maayos,” Laurel said.
Laurel expressed gladness that the AVC sided with forming a national squad.
“I feel so thankful to the POC and the AVC na rinerecognize nila na PVF needed some help because of their inactivity. They see na kailangang sumali sa international competition and we were given a break,” said Laurel.