It's the human and fun side of our sports heroes

De Jesus named as national team head coach


The Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. (LVPI) has announced the appointment of Ramil de Jesus as head coach of the national women’s volleyball team headed for the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta from Aug. 18 to Sept. 2

No less than LVPI vice president Peter Cayco formally introduced de Jesus to the country’s brightest volleyball stars during the open tryout late Friday at the Arellano University gym in Legarda.

Cayco said it is only fitting for the federation to appoint de Jesus to the coveted position as his track record of being a 10-time University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) and two-time Philippine Superliga (PSL) champion is hard to ignore.

But more than that, he is the last mentor to lead the country to its last podium finish when it emerged with a bronze medal in the 23rd Southeast Asian Games in Bacolod City in 2005.

“He is a winner. His track record speaks for himself,” said Cayco, who was tasked to run the national team program all the way to the 30th Southeast Asian Games that the country would host next year.

“We want to thank him for accepting this role and we’re very optimistic that he can form the best team that could lead us back to international prominence.”

Upon his appointment, de Jesus immediately buckled down to work and faced the country’s brightest volleyball stars led by incumbent national team members Jaja Santiago, Aby Marano, Alyssa Valdez and Kim Fajardo.

Also in attendance were Dindin Manabat, Cha Cruz-Behag, CJ Rosario, Mylene Paat, Kim Dy, Dawn Macandili, Jia Morado, Majoy Baron, Ara Galang, Kim Fajardo, MJ Philips, Rebecca Rivera, Mylene Paat, Mel Gohing, Sisi Rondina and Maika Ortiz.

De Jesus said the appointment comes with a lot of pressure, but he will try his best to live to the expectations.

“There’s a lot of pressure. There’s a big responsibility on my shoulders,” said de Jesus, who is asking for unity among all volleyball stakeholders.

“This is not an easy job, but we have to start somewhere to get the national team program going. And for this program to be successful, we need unity among members of the volleyball community.”

Aside from the Asian Games, the national team is also tipped to compete in four other international tourneys, including the prestigious AVC Asian Women’s Volleyball Cup in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand.

The second edition of the open tryout is set on Wednesday also at the same venue where UAAP stars like Tots Carlos, Isa Molde, Bea de Leon, Maddie Madayag, Jhoanna Maraguinot, Kath Arado, Jasmine Nabor, Kyla Atienza and Bernadeth Pons are expected to attend.