DELA NOCHE-IRAYA CRASH TO THAILAND 2 IN ASIAN U21 BEACH VOLLEYBALL OPENER
Jay Rack Dela Noche and Alexander Iraya suffer a 12-21, 14-21 defeat to Thailand 2's Netitorn Muneekul and Wachirawit Muadpha to open the country’s campaign in the Fourth Asian U21 Beach Volleyball Championships in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, on Tuesday.
Seeded seventh in the 12-team tournament, the Filipino representatives gave all their strength in the second salvo, keeping the match close but can’t keep up with the aggressive Thais.
The win propelled the Thai tandem into the quarterfinals with a 2-0 sweep of Pool B after defeating also No. 2 seed Ruben Gale and Connor O’Neill of Australia, 21-19, 21-14, in their opening match on Monday, July 12.
Meanwhile, the loss put the Filipino pair’s quarterfinals bid in peril as they must win their match against second seed Australians Ruben Gale and Connor O’Neill on Wednesday to keep their FIVB campaign alive.
“Eto na yung huling pagkakataon namin. Sana manalo kami at kailangan namin ang inyong mga dasal,” Iraya said.
The tournament serves as a qualifier for the FIVB U21 Beach Volleyball Championships scheduled Sept. 24 to 29 in the province of Roi Et in central northeastern Thailand.
Dela Noche and Iraya’s participation in the tournament is being supported by Philippine National Volleyball Federation partners Philippine Sports Commission and Rebisco.
Both are standouts from the University of Santo Tomas high school program and played their international debut in the Third Asian U19 Beach Volleyball Championships last week.