Where do we go from the National Team tryouts?

The Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Incorporated conducted a two-day tryout last month at the Arellano University School of Law Gymnasium for the Senior Women’s National Team and their Under-23 counterparts. A total of 38 players heeded the invite on the first day while 18 attended the second day.

Recently, a call back was conducted for the Under-23 pool to give consideration for selected players from the UP Lady Maroons because they were in the midst of their Thailand training camp that serve as their reward for winning the inaugural PSL Collegiate Grand Slam. Twenty-six players attended the unannounced tryout including Isa Molde, Tots Carlos, Marist Layug, Jessma Ramos, Justine Dorog, and Roselyn Rosier from UP.

Also in attendance for the final U23 tryout are Lycha Ebon, Czarina Carandang, Buding Duremdes, Angel Cayuna, Ivana Agudo, Celine Domingo, and Jerrili Malabanan of the FEU Lady Tamaraws. Eya Laure of the UST Golden Tigresses also joined the session. UAAP girls volleyball standouts Imee Hernandez, Lyann De Guzman, Alexis Ciara Miner, Justine Jazareno, Alleiah Malaluan, and Angel Anne Canino were also in attendance.

Now that the tryouts for both teams are done, what comes next?

LVPI President Peter Cayco said that the Under-23 will now serve as the farm team for the Senior’s squad. “We are planning a seamless transition from the Under-23 to the National Team,” he mentioned. They are making the transition as smooth as possible by potentially including up to four players from U23 to the Seniors pool.

Then, the governing body will announce the names included in both teams. When asked about the release, Cayco responded “latest is the second week of February”.

After announcing the names that will make it to the Under-23 and Senior Women’s national teams, they will let these players honor their commitment with either their UAAP school or PSL club. For Cayco, these will help the athletes stay fit even though they are not meeting regularly as a team. “Ang training sessions as you all know may mga tournaments and may mga practices na sila. So, we adjust, not so much in strength and conditioning kasi naglalaro yun mga yan eh,” he shared.

But while players stay in playing form during their collegiate or semi-pro competitions, Cayco expressed that “it’s the jelling that we need to work on”.

For that, the LVPI is planning to have a training camp for the seniors in Japan by August. If schedules fall into place, another training camp by June could push through. As for the U23, the camp could happen after the UAAP season, just in time for the Asian Women’s Under-23 Volleyball Championship in Vietnam from July 13-21.

The seniors training camp will then be used in preparation for two tournaments: the Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship from August 31 to September 8 in Korea and the Southeast Asian Games which we will be hosting in Manila from November 30 to December 10. The Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship that will be held from April 20-28 in China can also be used as a dry run by the Nationals for the bigger competitions lined up later in the year.