Today’s match (evening in Manila) against China PR will be the biggest game to date for the Philippines Women’s National Team and for midfielder Camille Rodriguez, defender Alexa Diaz, and goalkeeper Kearra Bastes-Jones, the reality of playing against the 8-time Women’s Asian Cup champions is a challenge and an honor for the team.
“Everyone knows the level of China PR,” said the seasoned midfielder, who was born and raised in Zamboanga City. “We’re all very excited and it’s going to be a tough match.”
With the match day coinciding with the Philippines public holiday “Day of Valor” or “Araw ng Kagitingan“, Rodriguez understands the patriotic sense for the team to dedicate the game to every Filipino.
“We’re here to play for something bigger,” explained Rodriguez. “Even if I’m not starting, we all have our individual roles in the team.”
Diaz, whose father hails from Pandacan, Manila, echoed Rodriguez’s words in playing for the country.
“It’s such an honour to represent our country and to do this for our country, for the people, for our families and to do it with one another, brings out a remarkable feeling.”, Diaz intoned.
Goalkeeper Bastes-Jones admitted that everyone has been rooting for her and the team to do well in the tournament, especially against a seasoned opponent in China PR.
“I have been getting messages from everyone,” said Bastes-Jones, who traces her roots from Davao, southern Philippines through her mother, Harriet Bastes. “They are going crazy just to hear that I’m playing for the Philippines.”
Photos from Mia Montayre