PHILIPPINE volleyball star Alyssa Valdez remains undaunted as the national team begins the most crucial stretch of its campaign in the 19th AVC Asian Senior Women's Volleyball Championship.
The host team will face first Asian powerhouse Korea on Sunday at the Alonte Sports Arena in Binan, Laguna, followed by the match against Vietnam the following day.
Coming off a straight-set loss to a much taller Kazakhstan side, 23-25, 20-25, 19-25, in the pool stage on Friday, Valdez still keeps a positive attitude despite aware the Filipinas are the massive underdogs against Korea led by superstar Kim Yeon Koung.
“We’re here to fight, we’re here to learn, we’re here to win,” said Valdez, who has been a consistent offensive force for the Philippines in its past two games in the pool stage.
"We’re really hoping (to win) with the good support system we have here,” she added. “Teamwork will bring us to a good finish, a good finish is giving 101 percent.”
The Philippines started the tournament with an emphatic win over Hong Kong, 25-21, 25-16, 25-17, but immediately came crashing back to earth with the loss against the Kazakhs.
Still, Valdez is not giving up just yet.
“‘Yun ang gusto namin ipakita and ‘yun ang gustong makita ng mga tao (ang mag teamwork kami),” she said. “Laban lang, ‘di pa tapos ang laban.”
Whatever happens in the playoff round, the Philippines has already surpassed its previous ranking of 12th place.