National coach Sammy Acaylar keeps PH team door open for omitted Marck Espejo
National men's team coach Sammy Acaylar says he's willing to take in Marck Espejo if he shows up during the Philippine pool's training. Dante Peralta

PHILIPPINE men’s team head coach Sammy Acaylar said he is willing to include three-time UAAP MVP Marck Espejo in the national pool if he attends their training sessions.

Acaylar said the power-hitting spiker from Ateneo didn’t attend the nationwide tryouts called by the Larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas (LVPI), the reason he was not included in the 25-man pool named on Tuesday.

Acaylar, however, kept the door is still open for Espejo as well as other players.

“Of course, habang nagte-training kami, open pa rin naman ako kung gusto nila mag-serve sa country. Bayan natin ito so I should be flexible sa aking decision. Gusto natin bumalik ‘yung volleyball sa maayos,” said Acaylar during Tuesday’s Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum.

[See Espejo the odd man out in PH men's volleyball pool]

Acaylar explained he had a wish list of players from Ateneo and National University that included Espejo, but added no one among the players from the two schools attended the tryouts.

The national coach, however, said he understands their situation since both teams are in the middle of the UAAP season.

“Naiintindihan ko sila at nirerespeto ko sila kasi may UAAP. Doon naman sa mga nakuha kong tao, puwede rin silang tumapat sa kanila,” said Acaylar.

“Ininvite ko sila coming from the heart, ako na nagpadala sa kanila ng sulat. It so happened na conflict sa UAAP,” he added. “’Yung 25 is still there, dagdag na lang tayo.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @reubensports