Cuban import Wilma Salas barely got enough sleep after flying in the night before her debut for PetroGazz in the Premier Volleyball League Season 3 Reinforced Conference on Sunday.
But despite a quick feel of the Angels’ system a few hours before the opening serve against the defending champion Creamline, the lanky import impressed on her debut after powering PetroGazz to a quick work of the Cool Smashers, 25-22, 26-24, 25-22, at the packed FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
Salas poured 20 points in her first game after her last stint in Turkey. The Cuban national team member hammered 18 attacks and had two kill blocks for the Angels.
“It’s my first time here in the Philippine and I feel very good. I saw that the team complemented each other very well. I’m so happy,” said PetroGazz.
Salas arrived in Manila Saturday night. Head coach Arnold Laniog called for an extra one-hour training Sunday noon to give Salas a quick rundown of their plays.
“She told me a while ago na wala daw siya sa tamang kondisyon sa ball handling kasi for the past two or three weeks she just did physical conditioning without ball. Kanina lang siya nakahawak ulit (ng bola), said Laniog.
“I only had physical conditioning and for one month I have not touched a ball. It’s just my first time today but I’m feeling good,” Salas said.
But despite all of these, Salas delivered the goods expected from her.
“Luckily pa rin na kahit dumating lang siya yesterday ang bilis niyang nakapag-jell,” said Laniog.
Now, after a big win, Salas can get her much-deserved rest.
“I need sleep later,” said the Latina.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles