May 25, 2024

PVL: Ced Domingo strives to find bearings in Akari

PVL: Ced Domingo strives to find bearings in Akari
Ced Domingo suits up for the Akari Chargers in the 2024 PVL All-Filipino Conference. | Photo (c) RM Chua.
Less than a week after helping Nakhon Ratchasima capture the Volleyball Thailand League title, Ced Domingo made her much-anticipated debut for the Akari Chargers on Saturday. 

Domingo saw action in the last two sets of Akari's season-opening loss to Cignal in the 2024 PVL All-Filipino Conference. 

The former Creamline stalwart had two points in her return to the league, an uncharacteristic performance she attributed to the lack of adjustment time with her new team. 

"Andoon pa rin ako sa adjusting and adapting sa bagong system, sa bagong environment, new teammates, and new coaches so coming to this game, honestly very ano lang yung expectations ko sa sarili ko," Domingo bared. 

"Hindi ko ganun tinaasan na parang, alam mo yung parang chill lang ako. Kung ano lang talaga yung…kung ano muna yung mabibigay ko for this game." 

Domingo, the third Filipino import to win overseas league title after Bryan Bagunas and Jaja Santiago, landed in Manila early Tuesday. She only attended her first full practice with Akari on Friday. 

The Chargers provided the FEU product a warm reception. Some of them, including her former PayMaya teammate Grethcel Soltones, even welcomed her to the family even before she arrived in the country. 

"Super welcoming. Nung pagdating ko dito, straight from the airport kasi dumating ako (February) 20 ng 1:00 a.m., training kami ng 12. Sobrang yung walang feeling na ‘hala, bagong team’ kasi nasa Thailand pa lang ako, nagme-message na yung iba sakin," the decorated middle blocker gushed. 

She added: "Medyo gumaan na 'yung loob ko and then hindi na rin naman bago 'yung iba kasi 'yung iba naging teammates ko na from college and sa PayMaya si ate Grethc. Super welcoming and no pressure."

The Chargers may have started their title-contention bid on the wrong foot, but Domingo is looking forward to their growth under the system of coach Raffy Mosuela and the guidance of Japanese program director Taka Minowa. 

"Super exciting lalo na na we’re under coach Taka rin...Tsaka honestly nung tumabi ako sa lineup, parang lumiit ako," she admitted. 

"Ang tangkad din talaga nila, so very promising and alam ko talaga na in the long run, meron din talagang ibubuga 'yung team namin. Chemistry lang talaga and more connection."

Domingo is also eager to carry over her valuable experience in Thailand to Akari as she continues to adapt to the system. 

"Ang mindset ko kasi going back here, gusto ko munang makita kung ano yung system ng Akari and then kung okay ba siya sakin, kung gaano ako kabilis na ia-adapt 'yung system," she said. 

"From there, tsaka ko ia-apply 'yung mga learnings ko sa Thailand. Ayoko kasi na biglang iapply ko siya, gusto ko munang malaman kung saang part ko siya ia-apply."

With Domingo steadily finding her bearings, expect Akari to put up a better performance when they collide with defending champion Creamline on February 29, Thursday, at the PhilSports Arena.