FORMER Ateneo athletic director Ricky Palou explained why the plans for Alyssa Valdez to join Foton in the Asian Women's Club Championship failed to push through as she pleaded for fans to stop bashing the former Queen Eagle on social media.
According to Palou, Valdez was willing to play for Foton after the team invited her two weeks ago to join it for the tournament set on September 3-11 in Binan, Laguna
But the president of Shakey’s V-League organizer Sports Vision noted that Foton withdrew its invitation to Valdez, who had already begged off from playing in the FIVB World Club Women's Championship in Manila on October, due to a Philippine Super Liga rule that members of the team should have played at least one conference in the PSL.
“First, Foton asked Alyssa to play in the Asian Volleyball Women’s Club Championship so they talked to me and I said, ‘Yeah she can play’ and I told Alyssa, ‘Alyssa, if you want to play, you can play’” shared Palou.
“She said ‘I’ll play in the Asian leg but I won’t play in the World’ kasi sabi niya sa World (Club Women’s Championship) pito ‘yung import. Baka hindi kami makalaro doon kasi most probably they will use the imports.”
“So we told Foton, I was talking to Alvin Lu, the manager, pwede ok na, Alyssa is good to play. A few weeks later they come back to me and said hindi pwede she cannot play because PSL has a rule that says to play in the club championship, you have to play in the PSL at least once conference. So that’s the reason why she’s not playing in this Asian Women’s Club Championship,” he added.
Palou also came to the defense of Valdez regarding her decision not to play in the PSL.
“The other thing is, other people are forcing her to play in the PSL, eh ayaw niya eh,” said Palou. “They’re saying pinipigil ko, hindi ko pinipigil si Alyssa maglaro (sa PSL).”
The former Ateneo official stressed that he gave Valdez the liberty to choose whether to stay in the V-League or transfer to PSL after she played out her five playing years in the UAAP.
“I told Alyssa, ‘Alyssa if you want to play in the PSL that’s fine with me, hindi sasama ang loob ko sa ‘yo. Choice mo ‘yan eh. If you think you’ll be better off there, by all means, it’s your decision’” revealed Palou.
“But ayaw niya ‘di ba? So people are bashing her kasi bakit ayaw niya mag-PSL, choice niya ‘yun eh ‘di ba? They should respect her choice ‘di ba?” he added.
Palou also hoped to put an end to the bashing on Valdez, whom he said is already getting bothered by the social media storm.
“Naaawa na nga ako kay Alyssa kasi you know naman how she is napakabait na bata walang ano ayaw niya na may mga kaaway siya. We’re hoping this thing will stop kasi we should respect the choice of a person. If she prefers to play in the V-League, fine,” he said.
“So sana ma-clarify na ito once and for all if they want to bash me it’s ok, I don’t read naman social media but they should stop [bashing] Alyssa,” he added.