Foton Pilipinas will be gunning for a crucial win when it battles powerhouse Bangkok Glass-Thailand in the 2016 Thailand Women’s Volleyball Championship today at the Wi Sommai Gymnasium in Sisaket Province, Thailand.
The Foton-Bangkok Glass game is at 11:30 a.m. (12:30 p.m. in Manila).
Foton and Bangkok Glass are in Pool A along with host Sisaket and Rungsit University while Pool B is composed of Rattana Bundit University, Kasetsart University, Nonthaburi and Ide Khonkaen.
The tournament serves at Foton’s build up for the Asian Volleyball Confederation (AVC) Asian Women’s Club Championship scheduled on Sept 3 to 11 in Laguna.
“As a new coach bringing in new ideas, the score is the last thing I am thinking of. I want to see the discipline and game plan, obsessive research of players trying to disrupt their game and team spirit,” said Italian head coach Fabio Menta.
Foton, however, will be playing without middle blocker Jaja Santiago and opposite hitter Jovelyn Gonzaga. Santiago cited academics at National University as the reason while Gonzaga failed to secure travel permit with the Philippine Army.
“Not having these main players when you try to mechanize your mtovements is a major step back to your work. I have a big surprise for everybody but trying it with only three days before such an important tournament is a gamble. That we will have to take away,” added Menta.
American imports Lindsay Stalzer and Ariel Usher will be banner the squad along with guest players Aby Marano and Jen Reyes, and mainstays Cherry Ann Rondina, Patty Orendain, EJ Laure, Maika Ortiz, Rhea Dimaculangan, Angeli Araneta and Ivy Perez.
Foton was scheduled to play Sisaket, composed of former and current members of the Thailand national team, on Wednesday night. They will play Rungsit University on Friday at 12:30 p.m. (Manila time).
“Of course, this is Thailand, the no. 14 in the world. Our main strategy is to slow them down and put them under pressure with quick combinations of attacks,” concluded Menta.