Kalei Mau booted out of PH team in SEA Games due to ineligibility issues

The Philippine national women’s volleyball team hits another roadblock in their quest to end the country’s podium finish drought in the Southeast Asian Games as Kalei Mau gets ruled out of the team due to ineligibility issues.

The F2 Logistics standout was booted out of the lineup after failing to meet the two-year residency required by the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB), according to Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas Inc. (LVPI) president Joey Ramasanta.

“We don’t want to jeopardize whatever problem she may encounter along the way. She could get suspended if she plays without securing transfer papers from the federation,” Romasanta said.

The LVPI president said he is also clueless as to why Mau failed to process the required documents to play for the Philippine team.

“I don’t know why she failed to submit the papers, but it really has to be her submitting it because she is a member. It’s not the LVPI,” Romasanta added.

The 6-foot-2 open spiker proved instrumental in the tricolor squad’s 2019 ASEAN Grand Prix campaign, where she emerged as one of the leading scorers in the first leg for the Philippines.

Mau had to miss the second leg of the inaugural tournament staged here in the country after sustaining an injury to her left Achilles.

Playing in the Philippine Superliga for teams such as the United Volleyball Club and now the F2 Logistics Cargo Movers, the Fil-Hawaiian spiker’s remains affiliated with the United States Volleyball Association (USVA).

According to Article 44 of the FIVB sports regulations, a player’s request to change Federation of Origin can only be approved if the player has “established residence in the country of his new Federation of Origin for a minimum of two continuous years”.

In Mau’s case, she must affiliate with the LVPI for at least two years should she wish to represent the Philippines in international events such as the SEA Games.

The open spiker is only one of the many players falling short of playing for the national team, with middle blocker Jaja Santiago and Alohi Robins-Hardy also unable to see action for the tricolor squad.