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Alyssa Valdez makes triumphant return as PH sweeps Singapore for semis berth
For the first time since 2019, Philippine women’s volleyball superstar Alyssa Valdez contributed in international competition, playing spot minutes as the Filipina squad swept Singapore, 25-17, 25-14, 25-13, to clinch a 2023 SEA Games semifinal berth.
Valdez, who has been out of commission since December 2022, scored the game-winning kill of the match to cap off an offensive showcase led by Kat Tolentino, Dell Palomata, and Jema Galanza.
The Philippines’ 18-year odyssey for a SEA Games podium finish now takes a familiar turn as longtime regional queen Thailand awaits in the knockout semifinal match on Saturday, May 13.
The Philippine women’s volleyball team seeks a bounce-back and an outright 2023 SEA Games semifinal berth as it takes on lower-ranked Singapore at Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on Thursday, May 11, 6 pm (Manila time).
Led by PVL MVPs Mylene Paat and Tots Carlos, with ample support from the likes of Dell Palomata and Jema Galanza, the Filipinas are expected to power through the Singaporean team, which notably gave up 15 points in its first-set win against a neophyte Cambodia team.
Singapore, however, would blast the hosts with a 25-3 second set before taking the game in the third, 25-10.
Safe to say, the Philippines cannot look too far ahead and be complacent.
With a win, the Filipina spikers can soon take a crack at another podium finish – their first since the 2005 Manila SEA Games – and face the likes of Indonesia, Malaysia, and near-unbeatable Thailand in the semis.
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