We need to work on our consistency, patience --Delos Santos

Mark Escarlote on Oct 25, 2019 12:01 PM
We need to work on our consistency, patience --Delos Santos
Nagpunta kami rito, kailangan ma-absorb namin kung anong merong galawan ang Japan -- PHI women's volleyball team coach Shaq Delos Santos

TOKYO --- After 12 sets of tune-up games played in their training camp here, Philippine national women’s volleyball team head coach Shaq Delos Santos wants his team to work on its consistency and patience on offense as well as absorb every lesson learned playing against the Japanese clubs.

“Nagpunta kami rito, kailangan ma-absorb namin kung anong merong galawan ang Japan,” said Delos Santos of their 12-day training camp which serves as part of the Filipinas’ preparation for the 30th Southeast Asian Games in Manila next month.

The Nationals have played against two club teams in their scheduled five tune-up matches in their international training made possible by Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. and the Philippine Sports Commission.

In its first practice match last Tuesday, the team absorbed a 25-18, 23-25, 18-25, 13-25, 12-15, drubbing at the hands of Kashiwa Angel Cross as the host club exposed the perennial problem of service reception.

Then Gunma Bank Green Wings tested the Nationals chemistry and coordination.

It was obviously still a work in progress as the experienced Japan Division 2 club stamped its class over the Filipinas, 20-25, 19-25, 8-25, in the morning session and winning three of the four sets played in the afternoon rematch.

Even with those results, Delos Santos is positive that the team will improve as the camp continues and will continue to learn to prepare for the biennial tournament that has 11-peat champion Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia and Singapore clashing in a single round-robin elimination round with the top two teams disputing the gold medal and the third and fourth ranked squads playing for bronze.     

“Not totally ganyan [Japanese] ang galaw ng makakalaban pero kailangan hangga’t maaari yun ang ma-absorb namin para kung maglaro kami ganun ang igagalaw namin kahit sino ang kalaban,” said the second year PHI coach. “Like ‘yung Thailand gumalaw di ba parang ang layo natin?” he added. “So dito tayo nagpupunta para maaral namin yung iginagalaw [sa Japan]. Ma-absorb namin dahan-dahan yan. Yung adjustment as an individual and as a team kailangan namin na ma-accept at ma-absorb ng team.”

In both tune-up games, the Filipinas actually went on a good start before slowly fading away as the game progressed with errors, miscommunication and defensive lapses piling up.

“May mga galawan na nakukuha naman natin pero yung maging consistent hanggang dulo yun ang kailangan. Kailangan humaba ang ganoong klase ng galawan,” Delos Santos pointed out.

He also stresses that if his team aims to end a 14-year podium drought in the SEA Games, his players must sustain their energy and aggressiveness from start to finish.

“Kasi parang sa atin gagalaw tayo ng isang maganda o dalawa after that stop na ulit tapos saka ulit [babalik],” he said. “’Yun ang kailangan naming ma-absorb and maigalaw namin yun pagdating sa SEA Games. Yun ang target namin.”

“Ang maganda sa mga kalaban natin dito na kahit mag-create tayo ng attacks o combination plays sa kanila parang normal lang, yung patience dun sa every point na gagawin mo kailangan ma-improve namin yun,” delos Santos added. “Alam mo naman sa atin once na mag-attack ka possible na mapuntos na pero dito kahit five times ka um-attack [nakukuha nila]. So ang patience din [sa offense] kailangan ma-improve namin sa sarili.”

Overall, Delos Santos hopes that his wards will have the mindset that they are no longer playing for their respective club leagues.  

“Kailangan tumaas ang mindset namin na pang-international level na ang pag-iisip namin,” he said.

The Nationals, who will miss the services of Alyssa Valdez and setter Jia Morado for the rest of the camp as they returned to Manila Friday for their club duties, will play Yamanashi Chuo Bank on Saturday.

They will wrap up their tune-up matches against Japan V. Premier League club Hitachi on Monday before facing Nittai University on Thursday.




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