National head coach Let Dimzom believes the Philippine women’s national football team is all set to kick its way into the podium in the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
“We are a hundred percent ready. We will do our best in reaching our goal of getting into the placer,” said Dimzon, who also mentored the Girls’ Under-14 team that won silver in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Regional Championship in 2014.
In preparation for the regional biennial meet, the women’s national squad underwent a two-month training with the final touches held at a training camp in Japan from August 1 to 8.
“The outcome (of the training camp) was good. Although the results of our games there were all losses, we got our objective of improving our pace in the game,” said the 37-year old coach.
The Malditas had friendly matches with Nojima Stella Kanagawa, Yamanashi Gakuin University and Kanagawa Prefecture Selection for National Games—all of which Dimzon deemed as having almost the same quality with strong regional contenders Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar.
However, the PH lady booters suffered several blows in their lineup due to injuries. The most recent hit was on main striker Eva Madarang, who dislocated her right arm.
“I cannot assure that she (Madarang) will play (in the SEA Games). As a coach, I do not want to risk the safety of my player,” said Dimzon.
Dimzon, nevertheless, can still count on domestic league top forwards Kyra Dimaandal (De La Salle University), Charisa Lemoran (University of Sto. Tomas) and Camille Rodriguez (Ateneo De Manila University).
The accredited 20-player roster will be revealed on Monday after the managers’ meeting.
Meanwhile, the Malditas begin their medal hunt in the SEA Games against host country Malaysia on August 15 at the Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Stadium.
JEREMIAH M. SEVILLA