Last-minute additions to the men’s competition, the Tean Volleyball Manila’s Kris Roy Guzman and Anthony Arbasto are grateful to be in the semifinals of the 2016 Philippine Superliga Beach Volleyball Challenge Cup.
The tandem compiled a 3-1 record in the elimination round, enough to clinch a seed for the tournament’s semifinals. Guzman and Arbasto, who both play for the University of Santo Tomas Tiger Spikers, shared they were asked to suit up as TVM had trouble finding players to represent its squad for the PSL.
“Hindi namin ine-expect na makapaglaro sa PSL kasi hectic pa ang schedule namin and galing pa kaming laro sa (Nestea Beach),” Guzman said.
“Bigla na lang kami kinontact, maglaro daw kami, so grateful kami na makapaglaro kami sa TVM and exposure na rin sa amin ito para sa UAAP.”
“Thankful kami sa manager namin na tinawagan kami. Hindi namin alam na magkakaclub kami. Sabi lang nila kami yung pang sampung team, kami yung pahabol, so exposure din,” Arbasto added.
TVM hadn’t been training formally as a team prior to the competition, and with most marquee names also focused on other commitments, the squad had to invite the young duo to play in the tournament.
Team manager Sammy Gaddi said having the youngsters play for the squad is a welcome development.
“The new guys, it’s a good team-up (with TVM). The boys will continue training. It’s good to have new blood and we have quite a few,” Gaddi said.
“Kapag offseason, there are a lot of clubs or volleyball groups who invite us to play with them, friendly games. Pero mahirap din for us dahil hindi rin regular ang training. They have work din eh so kanya-kanyang pakondisyon. Pero athletes namin, nararamdaman nila kailan magpakondisyon.”
Now preparing for the semifinals, Guzman said the pair will cherish the opportunity to learn from more experienced teams. Win or lose, what’s important is to gain more knowledge about the discipline.
“Laking tulong ito sa exposure namin. Malalaman din namin dito mga weaknesses namin, and yun ang i-wo-work namin. Marami din kami matututunan kasi mga veterans makakalaban namin so i-apply lang namin yung knowledge sa amin,” he said.
“Focus pa rin kami, stick lang sa game plan, basic na galaw, lahat naman marunong magbeach volleyball. Lahat malakas. Focus lang sa game. Kami yung maliit dito sa league eh, factor din siguro yun.”