MYLENE Paat is eager to prove she belings after getting a callup to the women’s national volleyball team for the 18th Asian Games in Palembang and Jakarta in August.
Ces Molina begged off from national team duties due to a stress fracture on her shin and Paat was called listed on the final 14-player squad for the Philippines, which will see action in Asiad volleyball for the first time 36 years.
“Sobrang excited ko kasi sobrang pangarap ko ‘to noong nasa college pa lang ako,” said Paat after scoring 15 points that helped Cignal bag third place in Philippine Superliga Invitational on Thursday at the Arena in San Juan.
In 2015, Paat had a chance to play for the Under-23 national team in the AVC Asian U-23 Manila but plans fell through.
“Naudlot lang kasi nagkamisunderstanding ‘yung Adamson tsaka ‘yung magiging coach ng Under 23,” the 24-year-old Paat said.
The Opposite Hitter, who hails from Pangasinan, admitted she was very glad to be part of the 20-woman pool, and making the final cut gives her an amazing feeling.
“‘Yung pagpasok ko sa pool sobrang blessing na ‘yun sa akin. Parang sabi ko ito na ‘yung umpisa ng paghihirap na ginawa ko, lahat ng pagpupursigeng ginawa ko,” the 5-foot-11 spiker said.
“And then, biglang binalita sa akin na ako nga daw ‘yung papalit kay Ate Ces. Sobrang naexcite ako kasi first time ko mapunta sa pool tapos first time ko rin mapabilang sa Top 14,” she added.
Donning the national colors for the first time, Paat intends to work harder and prove that she deserves to be part of the cream of the crop of Philippine volleyball.
“Kailangan lang talaga magfocus kasi siyempre ‘yung mga kasabayan ko doon alam naman nating mga stars sila,” she said.
“Kailangan ko makipagsabayan sa kung ano mang ability na meron sila. Kailangan ko magsipag talaga at magpurisge para makasabay ako kahit papaano.”