Brazilian coach admits blunder

Brazilian coach Jorge Edson Souza de Brito took the blame, saying that he made the decision of fielding the national squad in the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Invitational Conference.

In a television interview, Souza de Brito said he issued the go-signal to send the national team to the PVL as a last-minute replacement to Covid-hit Kobe Shinwa Women’s University.

Souza de Brito admitted that he accepted the PVL invitation without consulting the players, especially the members of National University who are still fresh from a grueling campaign in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines.

The miscommunication had resulted to a serious repercussion.

With the Lady Bulldogs begging off, the leadership of the Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) raised an uproar and “released” the players from the national team program.

[Related story: PNVF drops Lady Bulldogs]

With that, only two players were left – Trisha Mae Genesis and Jelaica Gajero – that prompted the federation to send the best performing team to the Asian Volleyball Confederation Cup that the country will host from 21 to 29 August.

“Sir Tonyboy (Liao) asked me if I wanted he team to join here and I told him to let me see my schedule because we have several matches this week,” said Souza de Brito, referring to PVL commissioner Tonyboy Liao.

“I told him that it’s okay and I can use this for the team in preparation for the AVC, the ASEAN Grand Prix and the Southeast Asian Games for next year.”

He said the final decision on where to play should always come from the national team coaches – and not from anybody else.

“The national team is different from a club team or a UAAP team because our calendar is short and so is our preparation,” he said.

“You can discuss and talk this out but the final decision has to come from the coaches.”

Fired from the national squad are some of the country’s brightest young talents in Ivy Lacsina, Princess Robles, Alyssa Solomon, Jen Nierva and Kamille Cal as well as Shaira Jardio, Evangeline Alinsug, Shena Toring, Nicole Mata, Camila Lamina and Joyme Cagande.

In a previous statement, Nierva admitted that they were shocked and disappointed with the sudden turn of events.

[Related story: Heartbroken Lady Bulldogs feel betrayed]

“In a snap, we’re out of the national team,” she said.

“They suddenly removed us from the team even if we already sacrificed and cut short the time for our families and friends.”

NU team manager Bing See Diet said based on their initial agreement with the federation, they will only compete in the AVC and not in any tourney, including the PVL.

[Related story: Philippine Team declines PVL stint]

“The program is for a five-week preparation for the AVC – nothing in-between,” See Diet said.

“Coach Jorge told them that if they don’t play in the PVL, they can’t play in the AVC as well. Of course, the girls were heartbroken.”

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