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PH bets gauge KL readiness in Asian tilt

The Philippine women’s volleyball team is expected to improve on its 12th place finish two years ago after being bracketed in a light group in the SMM 19th Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship which the country will be hosting on Aug. 9 to 17.

As hosts, the Nationals got the luxury of joining Kazakhstan and Hong Kong in Pool A of the 14-team tournament that is divided into four groups.

Volleyball officials are using the tournament as a gauge to determine the readiness of the Nationals for the coming SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia next month.

Kazakhstan and Hong Kong placed seventh and 13th, respectively, in the previous edition held in China two years ago.

Other participating nations are defending champion China, Japan, and Australia in Pool B; Korea, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, and New Zealand in Pool C; and Thailand, Taiwan, Iran, and Maldives in Pool D.

Matches will be held at the Alonte Sports Arena in Biñan, Laguna and the Muntinlupa Sports Complex with ABS-CBN Sports airing several matches live.

It marks the first time since 1997 that the country is hosting the biennial tournament with the Filipinos hoping to eclipse their best finish of fifth place in 1983.