With its PVL Finals chances bleak, PLDT looks forward to learning vs Japan | Inquirer Sports

With its PVL Finals chances bleak, PLDT looks forward to learning vs Japan

/ 11:08 AM July 26, 2023

PLDT coach Rald Ricafort PVL

PLDT coach Rald Ricafort. MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines—PLDT is making the most of its experience facing the visiting foreign clubs in the 2023 Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Invitational Conference semifinal round.

The High Speed Hitters swept Vietnam’s Kinh Bac-Bac Ninh, 25-23, 25-14, 25-23, to earn its second straight victory and stay in championship contention with a  2-2 record on Monday at Philsports Arena.


With their championship fate no longer in their hands after Creamline clinched the first finals berth with a 4-0 record and Japan’s Kurashiki Ablaze closed in on the other with three wins, PLDT coach Rald Ricafort is not thinking about the outcome of the standings as he chose to focus on the learnings they can get from facing the Japanese.


“It’s more on the challenge that we will be facing the Japanese. As you said, we no longer hold our fate for the final. We will just focus on the opportunity to play against a fast and talented team and use that experience for the next conference. We are not thinking about our chances for the [championship], we will just do our best on Thursday,” said Ricafort in Filipino.

Ricafort was also pleased with their performance against the Vietnamese club with the trio of Royse Tubino, Fiola Ceballos, and Mich Morente showing the way on offense orchestrated by veteran setter Rhea Dimaculangan and libero Kath Arado taking care of floor defense.

“We’re happy with this added exposure as we face foreign teams. What’s important is our preparation against Japan. We’re glad to build this momentum from our past games,” he said.

Arado, who faced a couple of Japanese clubs in friendlies when she was part of the Philippine women’s volleyball team, said the High Speed Hitters will be tested against Kurashiki, which country is known for its discipline in volleyball.

“They are known for being disciplined in every movement and their proper pacing. Our skills, individually and as a team, will be tested. We’re not thinking of the result, we will be working hard. We trust our coaches that they will guide us all throughout the match,” said the multi-awarded libero in Filipino.

Cignal and F2 Logistics, who are tied at 1-3, are already out of final contention with Kinh Bac (0-3) but still in the race for the battle for third place.


PVL: PLDT stays in title hunt with win over Vietnam side

PVL: Time for PLDT to show its mental toughness, says coach

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TAGS: Kath Arado, PLDT High Speed Hitters, PVL, Rald Ricafort

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