Next game will always be better than previous one, Alas Pilipinas coach vows

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Next game will always be better than previous one, Alas Pilipinas coach vows
All Alas Pilipinas games begin at 7 p.m. at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum.
STAR / Russell Palma

MANILA, Philippines – Alas Pilipinas women head coach Jorge Souza De Brito had one commitment to the Philippine volleyball community as the national team went 2-0 in Pool A of the ongoing AVC Challenge Cup held at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum.

No matter what happened, the Brazilian coach said that his team — which began training just days before the competition kicked off on Wednesday — will do better than they did the day before.

Despite slow starts to both their games against Australia and India to begin the pocket tournament, the Alas women are looking to be on the uptick as the matches go by.

“Every time that we're gonna play here, I'm sure that they're gonna show something better than the day before. Even if the guys are a little bit tired, they have the specific ingredients that we need. They are really committed to play,” De Brito said after the team’s four-set win over India on Friday.

In a marathon tournament such as this, where matches are played on consecutive days, it’s easy for the players to succumb to fatigue.

But as far as De Brito is concerned, everything has been smooth sailing because of the all-important seventh man on the court — the Filipino fans.

During the first two games, thousands of fans flocked to Manila to catch the action live, while boisterous shouts and cheers fueled the players. Faced against more experienced opponents, the tactician said that his players drew strength from the stands. 

“[The players] are really happy...A lot of fans are supporting them and they want to show up every single day better,” he said.

With two games remaining in pool play, De Brito said there’s going to be movements in his player rotation.

But knowing the caliber of his roster, De Brito has no qualms over using one player over the other. In his mind, all of Alas Pilipinas can step up to the plate.

“We're going to start the same [players]. But we need to do the changes. We need to move,” De Brito said of his game plan on Saturday against Iran. 

“It's important to play a competition day after day just using the same guys. I'm sure that the guys that will replace them, they will be ready to play. They will do the same. The guys can be really, really good, [and] have a good game again.”

A win by Alas Pilipinas over the Iranians will lock their place in the semifinals. Meanwhile, Chinese Taipei (0-3) awaits them in their final group stage game on Sunday.

All Alas Pilipinas games begin at 7 p.m. at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum.

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