DAWN Macandili is trusting the process of the Philippine women’s volleyball team’s youth revolution.
Dawn Macandili on young national pool
The national team libero, who played for Choco Mucho, one of two national squads in the Asian Women's Club Championship in Thailand, said she "agrees one hundred percent" with the selection of younger players in the 25-member pool.
But she’s not disregarding the non-inclusion of her fellow mainstays like Alyssa Valdez, Jia Morado,and others.
“Hindi naman siya sa binabalewala yung ibang players na deserve naman maglaro. We are thinking about the future of volleyball,” said Macandili in Spin.ph’s Zoom In on Wednesday.
“Siguro yung view ko with that decision to send younger lineup to a seniors competition, it takes time to mature as a player.”
Macandili, who started playing for the seniors national team at age 21 four years ago, said it took several tournaments before she reached her prime, winning several titles and individual awards in UAAP and Philippine Superliga.
“Kasi for me personally nung rookie year ko hindi naman ako ganun ka-galing and ka-mature on-court and it took me a while to gain that confidence to really mature as a player siguro by my third year pa,” said the multi-awarded libero out of La Salle.
The 25-year-old defensive specialist believes the recent stint of the national teams in the Thailand showpiece — although both Choco Mucho and Rebisco wound up as cellar-dwellers — will only make the newcomers and young guns better for future tournaments.
“It goes to show na through early exposure habang bata pa na kunwari hindi ka pa ready but you’re always exposed internationally, you’re always playing na kahit andito pa yung level mo,” Macandili said. “Through that exposure you gain something, you gain experience, you gain lessons na make-carry over next year habang bata pa.”
Faith Nisperos was among the young guns who showed potential.
The second Best Libero of the Asian Women’s Volleyball Championship said it’s only right to field young guns Faith Nisperos, Eya Laure, Mhicaela Belen, Ivy Lacsina, Imee Hernandez, setter Kamille Cal, and liberos Jennifer Nierva and Bernadett Pepito in international tournaments so the national team could start building its future.
“You know naman there’s a limit to our career. Wala pa tayo sa level na, kunwari sa USA, mga 40-plus na (nagreretire). Dito sa Philippines realistically 30 years old medyo pa-retire na, nagiisip na mag-family,” she said.
“Dito na pumapasok yung grassroots program na parang stinastart na ng PNVF na we should expose the younger players (for) them to experience high-level competition so that every year na ieexpose sila may experience na sila from the last year.”
Macandili was impressed with the oozing confidence and bravery of the youth brigade despite its winless campaign against the top Asian club teams, saying character will take them further.
The 2018 UAAP Finals MVP said this revamped national team roster needs more time to work on their team chemistry like her Choco Mucho team that featured several first-timers Tin Tiamzon, Deanna Wong, Dell Palomata, MJ Phillips, and Iris Tolenada.
“We worked what we had on our plate. Yun yung motivation namin to help each other. I could say naman na it worked out well na talagang we had, I know our hearts were there and I felt our chemistry pero siyempre with the little time we had, it wasn’t enough,” said Macandili on their sixth-place finish in the Asian tilt.
The 2016 PSL All-Filipino MVP will play her last tournament for the year with F2 Logistics in the inaugural Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) Champions League in November and she’s looking forward to finally make their professional debut in the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) next year after missing the previous bubble due to several injured teammates.
Macandili is excited for the loaded 2022 calendar for the national team, which she believes will make them better with several exposures.
“We’re always ready and very excited for 2022 calendar kasi yun naman yung goal talaga is to increase our exposure para makasabay na yung Philippine volleyball sa international level,” she said.
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