Nat'l team looks to develop speed, mental toughness in Japan

Mark Escarlote on Jul 14, 2017 03:59 PM
Nat'l team looks to develop speed, mental toughness in Japan
The Philippine national women's volleyball team will have a busy schedule ahead in their 17-day Japan training camp.

Philippine national women’s volleyball team head coach Francis Vicente is looking to work on developing the squad’s speed and mental toughness in their coming Japan training.

The Pinay spikers are set to fly to Land of the Rising Sun on Monday for a 17-day training camp as the team gears up for the AVC Asian Women’s Senior Volleyball Championship which the country will host from August 9 to 17 and for the 29th Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on August 19 to 31.       

“Ang kailangan namin bilis ng bawat isa kasi ‘yun ang nakikita kong ideal para sa ating team,” said Vicente during the national team’s send-off Friday at the Arellano University gym in Taft Avenue.

“Kasi we have the height, we have the skill but we need to learn speed pagkatapos kailangan din hindi lang sa physical but also sa mental part yun ang kailangan natin,” the mentor added.

Based on the team’s official schedule, it will have a two 3-hour daily training with Japan V. Premier League powerhouse Okayama Seagulls from July 18 to 25in Okayama City.

Then, the Nationals will move their camp to Osaka to train and play a series of friendlies with Ryokoku University, Osaka Superiors, Kobe Shinwa University and Osaka University of HSS before flying back to Manila on Aug. 2.

The Japan training will mirror the preparation that the national squad composed of legends Thelma Barina, Arlene Apostol, Natalie Cruz, Bernadette Burcelis, Mayie Prochina and MVP Nene Ybanez-Chavez did a month before they captured the country’s last SEA Games gold medal back in 1993 in Singapore.

Also present during the press conference were Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. president Joey Romasanta, vice president Peter Cayco, Rebisco vice president for marketing Lulu Dela Pena, Asian Volleyball Confederation executive council member Ramon Suzara, and LVPI official Danny Ignacio.

Suzara said the main agenda is to improve the team’s floor defense and blocking while developing its mental preparation to stand a chance against Asian giants like China, South Korea and Japan.

“The priority of the camp is floor defense, blocking and mental preparation. This is like what they went through in 1993,” said Suzara, also the president of the Philippine Superliga that has 13 of the 14 members of the national team. “Our target is to make it to the Top 8 in the Asian Seniors.”

Team captain Mika Reyes spearheads the team together with veterans Jovelyn Gonzaga and Aiza Maizo-Pontillas as well as Kim Dy, Dawn Macandili, Kim Fajardo, Aby Marano, Rhea Dimaculangan, Frances Molina, Gen Casugod, Denden Lazaro, Alyssa Valdez, Jaja Santiago and Maika Ortiz.

Assistant coaches Brian Esquibel, Kungfu Reyes, Ybanez-Chavez and Ronald Dulay were also in attendance.

Here's the national team's training schedule:



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