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Leaving RDJ, F2 was tough for Des Cheng: ‘It was necessary. But far from easy’

When the 2022 Premier Volleyball League Open Conference rolls around, Des Cheng will no longer don the trademark F2 Logistics red, yellow, and black.

The 25-year-old outside hitter from La Salle will be wearing Choco Mucho’s ube as she signed with the Flying Titans. Her and Aduke Ogunsanya’s departure came as a surprise to some, expecting them to be with the Cargo Movers for their pro debuts.

And even Cheng would admit that it was a tough decision she had to make.

Cheng penned a piece on Instagram account They Write, Too as she looked back on how hard it was to leave F2 Logistics and legendary head coach Ramil de Jesus.

“Let me just share my favorite life lesson I learned from this man (Ramil de Jesus): ‘Kailangan mong ipaglaban kung ano sa tingin mo ang tama. Sabihin mo kung ano nararamdaman mo kasi pag kinimkim mo ‘yan, diyan nagsisimula ang conflict’,” her piece read.

“That’s why the decision to move to Choco Mucho wasn’t easy. It was necessary. But far from easy.”

As early as November last year, Cheng had an offer to play for Choco Mucho.

During their victory celebration after winning the PNVF Champions League, Cheng was able to tell her mentor about it.2021-PNVF-Champions-League-F2-Logistics Leaving RDJ, F2 was tough for Des Cheng: 'It was necessary. But far from easy' News PVL Volleyball  - philippine sports news

“Before we started the festivities to celebrate winning Champions’ League last year, I took a chance and told him everything,” she recalled.

Instead of trying to stop Cheng from moving, De Jesus gave her his blessing.

“Coach Ramil said he wishes me well. He said he prays for a healthy Des in the years to come. He said he hopes my new team takes good care of me because it would hurt him to witness if they didn’t.”

After that, Cheng bid her farewell to her teammates, some of whom she has been with since 2015. These were the sisters-in-arm she had in winning two UAAP championships, two PSL crowns, and the inaugural PNVF Champions League trophy.

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That’s when Cheng realized that they are more than just a team, they were family. After all, family are the only ones who would understand.2021-PNVFCL-F2-Logistics-Macandili-x-Saga-x-Fajardo-x-Cheng Leaving RDJ, F2 was tough for Des Cheng: 'It was necessary. But far from easy' News PVL Volleyball  - philippine sports news

“Of course they wanted me stay but they get it. They hugged me. Then they let me go,” she continued.

“Up until the very end, the most valuable thing I kept receiving from this team-turned-family, far more valuable than the trophies and the medals we won together, is understanding.

“Pati from the supporters ng team ‘yan ang nakuha ko. Understanding. Inintindi nila the way I play during my early years na ang chaka naman talaga. I may not have a lot of ‘fans’ but I’m glad to have who I have on my side no matter what,” the UAAP Season 79 Finals MVP expressed.

Despite graduating from La Salle in 2019, Cheng never truly left Taft.

It’s only now that she truly has graduated.

“Sa coaches ko, sa mga teammates ko, sa La Salle, sa F2, at sa fans, salamat,” she said. “Binago niyo ang direksyon ng buhay ko. Binago niyo ako sa pamamagitan ng pagmamahal niyo.

“Ngayong aalis na ako sa Taft, lalabas akong alam ko pa rin lahat ng alam ko noong pumasok ako. Mas marami na nga lang akong alam ngayon. Mga skills na magagamit ko sa laro. Mga lessons na ma-apply ko sa buhay. At mga experiences to remind me that an archer’s aim is more accurate when her feet are both properly planted on the ground. At di hamak na mas marami pang space at desire to learn even more sa mga bago kong makakasamang coaches, players, at management.”

In the next stage of her journey, Cheng will now be under Ateneo head coach Oliver Almadro and playing alongside former college rivals like Deanna Wong, Bea De Leon, Kat Tolentino, and Ponggay Gaston.UAAP81-_Womens-Volleyball-DLSU-ADMU-Cheng-Dela-Cruz-3505 Leaving RDJ, F2 was tough for Des Cheng: 'It was necessary. But far from easy' News PVL Volleyball  - philippine sports news

“It’s about time to explore what is on the other side.

“Now is best time to grab opportunities because we will never get younger than we are today. It’s gonna be fun. And wild. And hard. And (hopefully) worth it,” she said.

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“Pero Lord, sana, sana lang, kung puwede lang, Wag naman sana mabwisit sakin mga bago kong teammates pag nakita nila ako dahil sa pinaggagagawa ko sa kanila dati,” she quipped.

“But I know that’s all in the past now. o with my eyes closed to stop the tears from falling and my heart open to good intentions and positive energy, I tell myself: ‘‘Des, let go. Des, let’s go!’”

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