Tough task for Shaq as he prepares to name 14 players for Asiad-bound PH volleyball team
Alyssa Valdez and Jia Morado talking to LVPI president Peter Cayco. Mei-Lin Lozada

THE Philippine women's volleyball team started its thrice-a-week training on Wednesday at the Arellano University gym after the coaching staff revealed the 20 members of its pool.

Team captain Aby Maraño led the players who showed up for the training supervised by head coach Shaq delos Santos and his staff, kicking off the buildup for the Asian Games in August, the Asia Cup in September and the 30th Southeast Asian Games next year.

Jaja Santiago, Dindin Santiago-Manabat, Kim Fajardo, Alyssa Valdez, Jia Morado, Ces Molina, Rhea Dimaculangan, Mika Reyes, Majoy Baron, Kim Dy, Dawn Macandili, Cha Cruz-Behag, Mylene Paat, CJ Rosario, Maika Ortiz and Rebecca Rivera were also present in the four-hour practice.

Meanwhile, Denden Lazaro, Myla Pablo and MJ Phillips were not able to attend the practice.

“Lahat naman sila fit para sa team pero kailangan talaga mamili, (pero) kung kami ang tatanungin kung pwede ‘yung 20 umalis lahat para makita ang exposure sa Asian Games,” said delos Santos.

Delos Santos said the final 14-man lineup will be announced on Thursday.

“Para sa amin ito ang pinakamahirap gawin ‘yung magbawas ka ng player,” he added. “‘Yung mga napili namin good thing kasi ‘yung mga napili namin kaya nilang maglaro ng ibang position.”

Premier Volleyball League (PVL) stars Valdez and Morado were also seen talking to Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. vice-president Peter Cayco in the wake of the decision to field the team in the coming tournament of the rival Philippine Superliga.

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