Milena’s return still uncertain

Milena Alessandrini’s return to the University of Santo Tomas’ volleyball roster is still up in the air, according to coach Kungfu Reyes. | PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF

University of Santo Tomas head coach Kungfu Reyes denied rumors that Filipino-Italian hitter Milena Alessandrini will be back to see action in Season 85 of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines next year.

The mentor clarified that the coaching staff will still need to assess if Alessandrini is in good condition to earn a slot on the Tigresses roster.

In fact, the 6-foot-1 spiker has yet to return from Italy where she has been undergoing continuous therapy and rehabilitation from a harrowing knee injury she sustained midway through Season 81 back in 2019.

Alessandrini, who was named Season 80 Rookie of the Year, skipped the pandemic-canceled Season 82 two years ago.

“Milena will be back of course to attend face-to-face classes but if the question is if she’ll also return to play for the Tigresses that is something I can’t answer right now,” Reyes told Daily Tribune.
Alessandrini is expected to fly back to Manila by next week.

“We still have to check if she has fully recovered from her injury and if she’s fit to play,” Reyes added.

As per UST’s The Varsitarian, Alessandrini is said to make a comeback in Season 85 to once again play alongside another Tigresses ace scorer in Eya Laure.

Reyes denied the claim.

“I know of the rumors circulating on social media saying that she’ll make a comeback in the next UAAP season but that’s not true,” Reyes said.

“We still don’t know yet. We still have to assess if she’ll be fit to occupy a slot on our roster.”

The Espana-based squad is set to compete in two pre-season tournaments.

UST has already submitted its lineup for the Shakey’s Super League 2022 Collegiate Pre-season Championship that will open on 24 September. The Tigresses will also play in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference.

Alessandrini, according to Reyes, won’t be suiting up for either tournament.

Reyes also clarified that Alessandrini will not participate in an exhibition match with Ateneo de Manila University in Bacolod next month.

“She won’t play. Maybe she’ll come along with the team but definitely, Milena won’t play,” he said.

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