Pinays seek payback against Kazakhs
The Philippines wants revenge against the Kazakhs, who defeated the Nationals two years ago.
BINAN CITY, Laguna –-- With a quarterfinals slot secured, host team Philippines looks to end the first round with a morale-boosting win Friday in a showdown with Kazakhstan in Pool A of the 19th SMM Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship at the Alonte Sports Arena here.
Game time is at 5:30 p.m. The match will air on a delayed basis at 6:30 p.m. on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23 and ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166.
Kazakhstan closed the quarterfinals race in Pool A after an empathic, 25-16, 25-17, 25-11, win over Hong Kong Thursday and in the process towed the Philippines to a spot in the Top 8.
Both Kazakhstan and PHI also qualified in the 2018 AVC Asian Women’s Volleyball Cup.
Despite squaring off in no-bearing match, PHI national team head coach Francis Vicente wants his wards to perform well to build momentum heading into the second round where their placing in the knockout crossover quarterfinals will be determined.
“So pipilitin naming maging maayos 'yung magiging laro (against Kazakhstan),” said Vicente.
The PHI defeated Hong Kong, 25-21, 25-16, 25-17, Wednesday.
Skipper Mika Reyes, Alyssa Valdez, who scored 14 points in the opener, 6-foot-5 Jaja Santiago and playmaker Kim Fajardo are tipped to lead the Filipinas’ march into battle against the taller Kazakhs.
“Alam nating malalaki 'yan, pero malalaki din naman tayo, malalaki ang puso natin,” said Vicente.
The PHI will need to watch out for Katerina Tatko, who saw action in just two sets against Hong Kong but still came up with game-high 14 points, Yana Petrenko and Yekatarina Zhdanova.
Kazakhstan swept the PHI, 11-25, 10-25, 13-25, in the first round two years ago in the Tianjin, China edition of the tournament. The PHI finished 12th in a field of 14 in the 2015 contest.
PHI and Kazakstan will face the top two teams of Pool C in the second round.
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