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Mela Tunay seeks to find her Tiger Power in the PSL

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Confidence, among many things, can be tricky for any athlete. Like Cignal’s Carmela Tunay, who is constantly written about, has a social media presence and plays in one of the most followed leagues in the country. According to Tunay, her loss of confidence was the main reason for her sporadic play in the recent UAAP season, something she looks to redeem by playing in the Philippine Super Liga.

“That’s the main reason why I joined the PSL, kasi I’m playing without the pressure that I used to have when playing in UAAP. I think kung mabalik ko dito ‘yung dating Mela na may tiwala sa sarili, malaki ‘yung maitutulong ko for UST next season,” Tunay remarked.

Tunay has experienced a recent uptick in her performance recently. For her past two matches, she’s averaged 8.5 point per game on a blistering 42.5 attacking efficiency rating. The Makati native was instrumental in their three-set drubbing of the retooled Philips Gold Lady Slammers wherein she scored 11 points.

“Inisip ko sa sarili ko na compared to UAAP, ibang liga na ‘to; mas competitive ‘to dapat. So nagdasal ako na sana bumalik ‘yung tiwala ko sa sarili ko because that was my personal struggle in the UAAP. ‘Nung last training namin, maganda ‘yung training kahit medyo kulang kami. We had tune-up then and medyo maganda yung nilaro ko. Siguro nagkaroon lang talaga ako ng tiwala sa sarili ko dahil sa mga teammates ko, sa coaching staff, and dahil na rin sa prayers,” said Tunay about her breakout PSL game.

Tunay and Cignal will have to work harder to spark a streak as they will next face the league-leading Petron Blaze Spikers who showed a slight chink in their armor after a five-set scare against Shopinas.

Though her confidence issues may still linger even after a stellar performance, Tunay can find solace in her thousands of fans who believe she can bring back her MVP form, with one of her biggest fans being her former coach, Odjie Mamon.

“She’s really good. Ang gusto ko sa kanya is very committed player yan, laging nagpapractice. I’m sure that she loves volleyball.  Sa volleyball kasi pasipagan ng pag-ensayo yan eh at isa siya sa mga pinakamasisipag,” Coach Mamon said.

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Miguel Luis Flores fell face first into sports writing in high sch9l and has never gotten up. He reluctantly stumbled into the volleyball beat when he started with Tiebreaker Times three years ago. Now, he has waded through everything volleyball - from its icky politics to the post-modern art that is Jia Morado's setting.

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