CIGNAL star Jovelyn Gonzaga eyes a major comeback in next season’s Philippine Superliga Grand Prix as she works her way in recovering from a torn ACL she sustained last year.
Gonzaga witnessed the HD Spikers book a semifinal ticket after turning back Foton Tornadoes, 26-28, 25-19, 25-19, 25-18, in their knockout quarterfinal in the All-Filipino Conference on Saturday at the Arena in San Juan City.
The national team mainstay bared that it’s “so far, so good” in her recovery and she is eyeing a return in the import-flavored conference of PSL, which opens in February.
“Most probably next year. Hopefully, next year. Di ko alam kung aabot ng Grand Prix, pero feeling ko naman. Malaki yung percentage na aabot naman,” Gonzaga told reporters. “Kailangan makaabot ako ng Grand Prix. So tutok talaga yung mga PT sa akin, tutok yung Moro (Lorenzo Rehabilitation Center) sa akin.”
“Looking forward and iniisip ko na eh, nagma-mind setting na ako na aabot ako ng Grand Prix,” she added.
Gonzaga suffered an ACL injury after an awakward landing during a Grand Prix match against F2 Logistics, November last year that kept her out of Cignal and the women’s national volleyball team to the Asian Games 2018 in Jakarta and the AVC Asian Cup in Thailand this year.
The opposite hitter from Jordan, Guimaras is now a corporal in the Philippine Army as she went through military training while recovering in her injury.
However, Gonzaga admitted that she had a hard time balancing her rehab and military training.
“Kasi after three months ng training, lumabas ako (sa camp) due to AFP Olympics so nag-rehab ako ulit and after nung mga two weeks na rehab, ni-recall kami sa loob so bumalik na naman ako ng one month. So na-stop na naman siya,” she said.
“So mga five days pa lang ako nagre-rehab ulit. So mahirap mag-cope since yung katawan ko malakas pero yung muscle niya na para sa laro, medyo matagal.”
Now that they’re on a break, Gonzaga wants to focus on her rehab as she badly misses playing volleyball.
“As much as possible ayoko talagang mag-absent. Ayoko na, ayoko na kasi kailangan ko na maghabol for next year and nami-miss ko na talaga maglaro,” she said.
And she is excited to rejoin Cignal next year as the HD Spikers have been playing well in her absence, reaching the semifinals where they will face twice-to-beat Petron on Tuesday at the Muntinlupa Sports Center.
“Bilib naman ako sa nilalaro nila kasi yung training program kasi nila sinusunod talaga nila. Minsan dumadalaw ako sa training nila and ang ganda ng pina-practice nila kasi more on specific talaga yung tine-train nila,” Gonzaga said.
“Nakikita naman sa outcome ng nilalaro nila. Kung mag-click pa yun lalo, siguro mas aangat pa yung nilalaro nila. Pero so far, so good yung nilalaro nila.”