Rebisco suffered a straight-sets defeat by Altay Volleyball Club of Kazakhstan, 23-25, 13-25, 17-25, to open their 2021 Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship campaign on Friday (1 October) at the Terminal 21 Hall in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand.
The Philippine club team deployed a shorthanded, youth-laden lineup that began strongly before falling under the brilliance and composure of the seasoned Kazakhs.
Mhicaela Belen and Faith Nisperos showed out in their seniors national team debut, stepping up in the absence of Aby Maraño, Dindin Santiago-Manabat, Eya Laure and Ivy Lacsina who are still clearing health and safety protocols.
The two promising stalwarts also helped carry the load of Majoy Baron and Kianna Dy, the last-minute additions to Rebisco in a bid to fill the void left by the quartet.
The strongest showing of the Filipinas came in the opening set but the close affair turned into a lopsided one in the succeeding sets, where the Kazakhs asserted their dominance to secure the win and a share of early lead in Pool B of the preliminary stage.
Rebisco will resume action on Saturday when it faces Iranian side Saipan Tehran.
Ohmer Bautista is a sports journalist who has covered local and international sporting events in the Philippines. The views expressed are his own.