UAAP Season 82: I don't want to force her -- Almadro on still recovering Wong
Mark Escarlote on Jan 29, 2020 12:59 PM
Deanna Wong is likely to miss UAAP Season 82 with Ateneo coach Oliver Almadro expressing concern on her injury.
Ateneo de Manila University head coach Oliver Almadro would rather see setter Deana Wong fully recovered and in top form than force her to suit up for the Lady Eagles in their title defense in the UAAP Season 82 women’s volleyball tournament.
Although not directly saying that Wong will sit out the season, Almadro is more concerned with his ward’s recovery from a stress fracture on her right shin.
“I don’t want to force the issue,” said Almadro. “Ayaw ko ‘yung pwede na. Basta when they [therapists] say ‘Coach pwede na’, no. You tell it to me if it’s 100 percent it will be OK.”
“But if it’s not, I don’t want to force because her health and her career are at stake,” added Almadro, stressing his concern for Wong’s volleyball career. “So I don’t want to be the hoodlum, yung kontrabida pagdating sa future.”
Although uncertain if Wong will be included in the final lineup, Almadro is confident that his remaining playmakers in sophomore Jaja Maraguinot and the returning Generika-Ayala setter Jamie Lavitoria are more than enough to fill the void.
“Si Jaja marami na rin siyang natutunan kay Deanna last year. Si Jamie naman ganun din. Nagbibigay na rin siya ng experiences niya with her experience sa pro-league so malaking factor yun for us.”
Wong was instrumental in Ateneo’s Season 81 championship run despite playing hurt. The Season 80 Best Setter skipped the Lady Eagles’ campaign in the Premier Volleyball League.
“Actually last year, when I came in meron na ‘yun,” said Almadro. “She just have to endure the pain. She just have to do more para lang ma-achieve nya yung gusto nya ma-achieve last year.”
“As you can see naman last year she started slow then nag-peak na lang siya towards the end,” added Almadro, who steered the Lady Eagles to their third title in his first year as replacement of Tai Bundit. “Hopefully if not this year, next year sana makabalik siya. But if not God’s willing, God has always purpose in everything, maybe He wants others to shine. He wants other to give more in behalf of Deanna.”