To start the year afresh, the Foton Tornadoes have rebranded to the Chery Tiggo Crossovers, having put up a squad raring to shake the Philippine Superliga landscape.
“Late last year, UAAGI, the distributor of Foton in the Philippines, acquired the distributorship of Chery vehicles. This is why we changed the name of our team from Foton to Chery,” said Ms. Noelle Aujero, AVP Marketing of United Asia Automotive Group.
“So, it’s the same owner, same group. We changed the name because we acquired the distributorship of this new brand. We want to highlight the new brand that we’re carrying instead of Foton.”
Chery Tiggo is set to deploy most of the players in Foton’s nucleus a year ago.
The core includes the Santiago and Laure siblings, Shaya Adorador, Lai Bendong, Marian Buitre, Justine Dorog, Elaine Kasilag, Arianne Layug, Maika Ortiz, Jen Reyes, and Gyzelle Sy.
To beef up their bid in the fast-approaching season, the Crossovers have also acquired the services of different players from across the league.
They have signed Mylene Paat and Jannine Navarro from Cignal; Rachel Austero and Joy Dacoron from Sta. Lucia; and Ria Duremdes from Petron — joining the addition of setter Jasmine Nabor from PLDT.
“I’d say na mas deep ‘yung bench namin ngayon. In terms of height, mas tumaas ‘yung team namin. Regards to the chemistry and jelling, it’s always been a work in progress,” said Chery head coach Aaron Velez.
The Crossover, though, will have to wait a while before unleashing their full arsenal.
Velez bared that UST’s EJ and Eya Laure, along with FEU’s Duremdes and UP’s Dorog, will first focus on their respective UAAP stints. Not to mention the fact that Jaja and Dindin are still playing in the Japan V. Premier League.
Still, expect Chery to put up a strong campaign all year long.
As Velez said, “But rest assured the team is going to be fiercer stronger and more competitive than last year.”
The Crossovers will raise the curtains to their campaign in February in the PSL Grand Prix.