It won’t be her first time to represent the Philippines in an international tournament, but Aby Maraño admits she’s pressured to perform well for the PSL All-Stars set to compete in the Thai-Denmark Super League later this month.
“Medyo may pressure for me, kasi sa ilang beses ko nakapaglaro sa international natutunan ko ang kahalagahan ng preparation dahil talagang magagaling ang mga banyaga,” she told FOX Sports.
“Sa ngayon, bilang kakaunti na lang ang panahon para makapagensayo kami, ang tangi naming magagawa ay lubusin ang mga ensayo. We should make it sure na sa ensayo 100% ang ibibigay namin because that’s the only time we could train together kaya bigay todo dapat,” she added.
Maraño, along with the best from the semi-pro ranks, will leave for Thailand in 2 weeks and that means limited practice time as they face top teams from the Southeast Asian power and Hong Kong.
Training on a hot Sunday afternoon, the All-Stars faced a men’s team composed of players from different schools.
The former UAAP MVP said facing physically stronger men greatly helped them in getting ready, given the fact that they have just practiced twice as a group so far.
“Okay ensayo namin kahapon, given na nakapagtune up kami sa lalaki,” she shared. “Tapos maganda performance ng lahat sa tingin ko kundisyon ang team and magandang nakapaglaro kami together so that mas magamay naman bawat isa.”
“Sa tingin ko kulang pa yung communication. May mga times na nagkakahiyaan sa bola. Connection din ng spikers sa setters ganyan. What we need is time to train often talaga para magkakilala ng lubos ang lahat,” she added.
Nonetheless, Maraño welcomes the opportunity to wear the country’s colors again.
“Playing outside our country is always and will always be overwhelming to me, and maybe to others too,” she stressed. “Iba talaga magrepresent ng country, mas nakakamotivate magpagaling at magpalakas as a player.” — By Joyce Palad