DENDEN Lazaro faces an arduous task as the libero of the Rebisco-PSL All-Stars Manila team competing in the 2017 Asian Women's Club Volleyball Championship in Kazakhstan from May 25 to 31.
The former Ateneo libero shared that she's thrilled and nervous at the same time ahead of the team's stint against high-level competition in Asia.
But she was quick to point out that she's more excited to learn from the experience of competing against some of Asia's top club teams.
"I'm very excited and nervous at the same time, so mixed emotions," said Lazaro. "Paghahandaan namin 'to ng mabuti as a team."
Rebisco-PSL will be facing Hisamitsu Springs-Japan, Tianjin Bohai Bank-China, and Vietinbank-Vietnam in Pool B of the eight-club tournament.
"Sabi nga nila, it is tough competition. We will be competing against Japan and China and these are top teams not only in Asia but in the world. Marami kaming matututunan as a team," said Lazaro, who is also a member of the national team bound for the Southeast Asian Games.
While the competition will be a learning experience, Lazaro said the team will definitely be out there to win games and improve on the country's eighth-place finish in this same competition two years ago.
"Individually, I will do my best. We will make the most out of the opportunity not just for exposure but also try our best to win the game," said Lazaro.
While she is busy with her stint with Rebisco and the national team, Lazaro is still very much an ardent supporter of her former Ateneo team, which was coming off a loss to La Salle in the UAAP Season 79 finals series.
Lazaro remained proud of her school's valiant effort in its first season without longtime star Alyssa Valdez, while also happy for her former high school teammate Kim Fajardo.
"Siyempre malungkot but happy na lumaban sila hanggang sa huli. Hindi naman nila basta basta binigay 'yung championship. Two games, dikit ang laban," Lazaro said of the Lady Eagles.
"La Salle deserved the championship. I'm really happy for Kim (Fajardo) na she graduated with a championship," said Lazaro.
Lazaro also gave her take about the decision of Ateneo setter Jia Morado to skip her fifth and final season with the Lady Eagles.
"Naiiyak ako pero desisyon niya 'yun. She is done with her four years. Let's see na lang, baka magbago pa ang isip niya. Let's just respect her decision and support her with that," Lazaro said.