HE has been so used to having his family cheer him on from ringside, but now it’s the other way around for PBA veteran Eddie Laure as far as his eldest daughter EJ is concerned.
Laure is now the No. 1 fan of the rising University of Santo Tomas star, who has made quite a splash in her first stint with the Espana-based school in the Shakey’s V-League Season 11 First Conference.
Just 16, the reigning UAAP high school volleyball MVP has become the top scorer for the Tigresses in the tournament, bringing renewed hope for a former college powerhouse that has missed the UAAP Final Four the past two seasons.
The elder Laure, who has built a long, accomplished career in the pro ranks after his college stint with Adamson, said he was so proud to see his daughter in action that it brought him close to tears.
“Noong una parang tumatayo balahibo ko, nangingilid ang luha ko,” an emotional Laure admitted to Spin.ph.
“Iba pala pag ikaw ‘yung nanonood, lalo pa anak mo, parang sobrang emotional ko. Hindi ako makapaniwala na ako na pala ang isa sa mga fans niya. Sobrang na-overwhelm lang ako,” he added.
Despite being with EJ everyday in practice, Eddie still cannot believe the super rookie can exceed even his own expectations, from her work ethics in training to her all-around performance during games.
“Actually hindi ako makapaniwala sa nilalaro niya,” admitted the Alaska forward. “Araw-araw akong nanonood ng practice niya pero ‘di ko pa rin expected na makakalaro siya ng ganoon. Maganda ‘yung pinapakita niya, maganda nilalaro niya.
“Sa totoo lang noong nanonood ako parang kinikilabutan ako na parang di ako makapaniwala na makapaglalaro siya ng ganoon kalakas. Ganoon kalakas ang palo niya, ganoon kaganda ang depensa niya, ‘yung focus niya ba, ‘yung determination niya sa game."
Father has only one piece of advice for his athletic daughter, now that she has to deal with the high expectations.
“Kinausap ko siya, sabi ko, ‘Ate, kailangan mong mas mag-focus ka pa sa laro mo kasi sobrang taas na ng expectations sa’yo,” he said.
“So sabi naman niya, ‘Daddy, sige kung maka-concentrate ako sa last practices namin, mas lalong pag-iigihan ko pa, mas mag-effort pa ako, bigay pa ang best sa practice para pagdating sa game natural na lang.’
“Natutuwa naman ako sa kanya kasi sa kanya mismo nanggagaling ‘yung determination at motivation.”