Denden Lazaro is one of the barometers for liberos in the Philippines.
For her outstanding floor defense, she earned the nickname ‘Iron Eagle’ during her five-year stint with Ateneo de Manila University.
The multi-titled Lazaro upped her game when she stepped into the professional scene, which then became her ticket to multiple National team gigs. Today, she remains one of the most seasoned defensive specialists in the game.
And when asked who among the current crop of liberos in the UAAP resembles her game the most, Lazaro — who recently signed with the Choco Mucho Flying Titans — revealed that there are actually two players who reminds her of herself a few years back.
“I think I have to say it’s Roma Doromal from Ateneo. Also, Jennifer Nierva of NU,” shared the 28-year-old Lazaro in Tiebreaker Vods’ The CPT Crossover, presented by SMART.
Though she only played two games in Season 82, Lazaro — a one-time UAAP Best Digger and two-time Best Receiver — shared that Doromal’s maturity is beyond her years.
“Although, she was a libero na in high school. So she’s a lot better than me when I started in college as a libero. But like how she plays, paano siya gumalaw, parang I see myself in her. But she’s a lot better,” continued the one-time V-League champion.
Though the UAAP Season was cut short, Doromal, who is playing her first year with Ateneo, and Nierva, a sophomore from National University, already showed flashes of brilliance on the Taraflex.
Meanwhile, Lazaro, who begged off from the National team pool for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, also gave her take regarding who’s the better libero, Dawn Macandili and Kath Arado?
Lazaro bared that Macandili has the upper hand in mileage, having represented the country numerous times in different international tournaments. However, the two-time UAAP champion believes that Arado is on the same path that she and Macandili once trod.
“Dath. DawnKat. How do you make ano, ‘no? I don’t know — they’re both good, but Dawn has more experience than Kath. ‘Yun ‘yung lamang ni Dawn kay Kath. But Kath will get there eventually, more experience lang. Especially in the international scene.”