Handshakes are back. Change courts after sets, too. Alyssa Valdez? Maybe by the end of next month.
The Premier Volleyball League (PVL) is bringing back its prepandemic rituals starting in the 2023 All-Filipino Conference next Saturday at Smart Araneta Coliseum, even as one of the tournament’s top attraction remains on the injured list.
“We will do again the protocols that had been happening before the pandemic,” said tournament director Tonyboy Liao during the press conference on Saturday at Discovery Suites. “During the match, when both teams are introduced during the pandemic, both teams take a bow with their hands. But now, you go straight to the opponent and shake hands with them. We are also bringing back the switch sides. So, every other set, change courts.”
Holding their breaths
Those awaiting the return of Creamline star Valdez from injury, however, will have to hold their breaths a little longer.
“Hopefully, by the end of February, she will be 100 percent to play in the court,” said Creamline coach Sherwin Meneses in Filipino. “As of now, she is still undergoing rehab but she can now move and jump. But she has been showing good signs of improvement from her rehab.”
With the Cool Smashers staying away from a dizzying offseason that featured players and coaches switching tams, Meneses will call on his old reliables to step up for the absent Valdez.
The two-time PVL champion coach will bank on Michele Gumabao as a starter and convert reigning MVP Tots Carlos into an outside hitter.