NATIONAL women’s volleyball coach Ogie Mamon and Brazilian consultant Jorge Edson yesterday cited the need for fresh young blood and taller players while leaving out popular veterans Alyssa Valdes and Jia Morado in the two national squads set to compete in the Asian Women’s Club Volleyball tourney in Thailand next month.
“We need fresh young blood and taller players. And I think what we have here are the best,” stressed Edson, who played a key role in selecting the players for both teamsin the Philippine Sportswriters Association online forum.
Fans are clamoring for the inclusion of Valdes and Morado in the two squads, especially after they were adjudged as the best spiker and setter, respectively, in pacing the Creamline Cool Smashers to a runner-up finish in recent PVL Open Conference.
“Both Alyssa and Jia were unavailable when we conducted national tryouts because it came in conflict with their commitment for their club. The team formation is over and done with,” Mamon said of the compulsory tryouts conducted by the Philippine National Volleyball Federation.
Joining the two coaches in the public sports program backed by San Miguel Corp, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp, Smart, Milo, Amelie Hotel and Braska Restaurant were PNVF president Ramon “Tats” Suzara and national men’s coach Dante Alinsunurin.
Edson, a member of the Brazilian men’s volleyball squad that bagged the gold medal in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, said that selecting the members of the two teams was not a popularity contest through social media.
“It is good if you have access to social media but it is not where I make my decision. The coaches are here to make the decision to form the best volleyball team. We have to make our national team taller and younger, and keep them playing altogether,” he said.
He said he had a good look of the players he had in mind when he watched the games in the PVL Open Conference for 10 days while he was quarantined at the Diamond Hotel, and these were the ones he picked to join the training camp early this month in Lapa, Batangas.