Clinching the coveted Philippine Superliga Grand Prix championship last year, defending champion Petron Blaze Spikers will now continue its championship defense as the team is set to compete and represent the country in the upcoming 16th AVC Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship which will be held at the Ha Nam Competition Hall in Phu Ly, Vietnam which will take place this weekend.
“It’s going to be a tough battle from start to finish. The best and brightest club teams in Asia will be there,” Petron head coach George Pascua said via the league’s official website. “It is really an honor to represent the Philippines in a competition as prestigious as this, so we will return the favor by playing our hearts out and treat every single match as if our lives are on the line.”
Aside from being known as a premier FIVB-recognized inter-club tourney, the winner will also get a ticket to represent Asia in the upcoming FIVB Women’s Club World Championship next year.
“It may be a highly-competitive field, but Petron has what it takes to pull off a pleasant surprise,” PSL president Ramon “Tats” Suzara remarked. “The entire Superliga family is looking forward to an impressive performance from the Blaze Spikers. We know they can make it.”
Returning to action for Petron will be last PSL Grand Prix’s Best Setter Erica Adachi along with the likes of seasoned locals Dindin Santiago-Manabat, Abigail Maraño, Fille Cainglet Cayetano, Rachel Ann Daquis, Jen Reyes, Mina Aganon, Ces Molina and the rest of Petron’s All-Filipino Conference championship squad.
In addition, Petron is also set to replace Grand Prix MVP Alaina Bergsma with Brazilian hitter Rupia Inck.
Petron is situated Pool B of the tournament along with the likes of Islamic Azad University of Iran, North Korea’s 4.25 Sports Club, China’s Zheijiang and defending champion Hisamitsu Seiyaku from Japan. On the other hand, Pool A consists of Zhetyssu Almaty from Kazakhstan, Bangkok Glass from Thailand, Taiwan Power from Chinese Taipei and Lien Viet Post Bank from host country Vietnam.