MANILA, Philippines -- PLDT Home Fibr is maximizing its time at the Splendido Hotel in Alfonso, Tagaytay, where it is in the midst of a 14-day training camp.
The Games and Amusements Board (GAB) approved the camp, which started last May 10 and will end on the 22nd.
For Power Hitters head coach Roger Gorayeb, the camp is crucial for their build-up to the 2021 Premier Volleyball League Open Conference. Before being allowed to train in Tagaytay, they were only able to hold practice at Paco Arena in Manila City for two days before NCR-plus was put under Enhanced Community Quarantine.
"Malaking bagay ito kasi matagal na kaming hindi nag-prapractice. Nag-practice na nga kami, dalawang araw nga lang dahil nag-ECQ," said Gorayeb.
"Kaya nag-worry ako kasi yung ibang team nag-start na. Mayroon sa Subic at sa Clark. Nag-push talaga ako kay Sir Bajjie (Del Rosario, PLDT team manager) kasi naiiwan na tayo," he explained.
Choco Mucho and Creamline have been training in a bubble setup in Clark since April 27.
PLDT's new recruits, Rhea Dimaculangan, Isa Molde, Marist Layug, Eli Soyud, Chin Basas, Yeye Gabarda, and Nieza Viray, are now training in the bubble together with their holdovers -- Shola Alvarez, Jorelle Singh, Aiko Urdas, Joyce Sta. Rita, Vira Guillema, Kath Villegas, and Alyssa Eroa.
While the players are in shape, Gorayeb acknowledged that the Power Hitters are still shaking off the rust after a yearlong layoff.
"Kasi halos talagang isang taon na na walang ensayo. True enough, kondisyon yung katawan nila dahil nag-Zoom training naman kami pero yung skills, hirap mag-service at receive. Kaya sana maayos namin ito dahil hanggang next week kami dito," said Gorayeb, who is joined by assistant coaches Clint Malazo and Ariel Dela Cruz.
For GAB chairman Baham Mitra, the training bubbles of PLDT and the Rebisco group should serve as an inspiration for the other PVL teams to find a local government host in low-risk areas so that they could also resume their prep for the looming season.
"Properly coordinated yan. Binibiro ko nga sila, I guess you guys must come out with pictures kasi yung other teams, wait-and-see pa rin," said Mitra.
"Sila, they fully complied. Nandiyan yung LGU clearance din nila, health protocols, plus nag-inspection na ng venue. So, since nag-umpisa na yung PLDT team at Rebisco, puwede na rin yung iba. Sundan natin yung example nila na maaga pa, naka-request na at nagpa-inspect para makapag-ensayo na tayo."
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