The Philippines may be flying back to the country sans a medal after falling short in the Asian Games 2018, but Jia Morado will surely go home with a happy heart.
The 23-year old Morado will be leaving Indonesia with a different kind of treasure as her long-time idol Nootsara Tomkom of Thailand gifted her a volleyball jersey.
In a post through her official Twitter page, Morado shared a photo of her holding a jersey of the multi-awarded Thai setter which the latter wore during the gold medal match of the quadrennial meet.
The Creamline Cool Smasher setter expressed her uncontainable happiness of not only being able to play in the same court as Nootsara, but of also going home with a memento from the Thai legend.
“To be in the same tournament, much more the same court, as the player I have always looked up to definitely makes the hard work and sacrifices I’ve made worth it. But bringing home the jersey she wore in their championship game leaves me speechless, and even more inspired to work harder to be given an opportunity like this again,” Morado wrote.
Often compared to Nootsara’s style of playmaking, Morado has made a name for herself as the Filipino version of the Thai setter, made possible by former Ateneo head coach Anusorn Bundit.
“Thank you so much @nootsara13. You’re an inspiration to me and millions of volleyball players in the world,” Morado added.
I’m speechless. Thank you so much ❤ pic.twitter.com/pxkcGdih3R
— Julia Morado (@juliacmorado) September 1, 2018
Morado and Nootsara played against each other when Philippines and Thailand met during the tournament opener which the latter won in straight sets.
They went on to go on opposite roads as Morado and the Philippines finished eight while Nootsara and Thailand improved to a silver medal finish after losing to China in the Finals.
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