“Bakit mo kailangang i-doubt 'yung sarili mo kung alam mo namang kaya mo?” Cherry Ann Rondina, more known as Sisi, answers when asked where she gets her kind of confidence.
If there’s anything that Sisi takes advantage of, it’s knowing exactly what she wants. This is how she gets the best out of her life. “Set your goals first talaga and wala kang ibang gagawin kung hindi tingnan kung anong gusto mong maging in the future,” the fierce Tigress says.
This mindset has got her eyes fixed on the prize, like a true tigress hunting for her prey. This year, she’s pawning on bringing UST to the championship, and so her list of must-dos to attain the coveted trophy is all laid out. Balancing studies with trainings and games is inevitably difficult, but the formidable Rondina doesn’t mind the sacrifices that come with it. “Kinakailangan na dedicated ka sa mga ginagawa mo,” the Cebuana native imparts.
Passion drives her to continue working hard, and her family in the front line of inspiration where she gets her strength to push through. Her coaches from her hometown to the current ones see the ever-growing potential of this 22-year-old, and she did, too—a reason for her to continuously develop her skills over the years. She applies every learning from the court and equips it to the next, a secret to her daily improvement.
Before finding her way to volleyball, she’s a runner. As an athletics player, she wasn’t aware then that volleyball would eventually be her destination. The game was a leisure sport, until third grade came and tryouts were held. Sisi got addicted to it, and fast forward to present, she’s made a name for herself in the UAAP scene.
There have been downfalls, of course, but Sisi is an optimist with an open mind. “Huwag lang mawawalan ng pag-asa. Kung babagsak man, e di tayo lang. Life goes on,” the volleyball hitter shares.
She’s already on top of her game, but Sisi has her feet planted to the ground. Her father taught her to wait for her time and not rush everything. Easy come, easy go, they say, and this isn’t the fate that await the this Tigress. She bids her time—and then strikes when the timing is right.
"Alam ng mga tao na hinding-hindi mo sila ipapahiya, kasi kaya mo," Sisi says, and this makes her strong—the winning confidence to triumph in life. Her aura—a signature Rondin—sends off a fierce and unquestionable faith in herself, and it radiates on and off the court. Sisi trusts her gut, her family, her teammates, and God, foremost, and this knowledge leads her closer to reaching her dreams and her destiny that awaits.
Photographed by Erwin Canlas
Creative Direction by Madel Asuncion
Art Direction by Mikka Caronan
Styled by Aldrin Ramos
Assisted by Daphne Aranilla and Sammie Rodriguez
Makeup by Janell Capuchino, Andi Sapina, and Jean Lim
Hair by Francis Guintu, Nikko Bruel, and Jhear Abellar
On Sisi: Top and pants by H&M
Catch the UAAP Season 81 Women's Volleyball games starting on February 16 on ABS-CBN Sports+Action.
ALSO READ: #TheStrongSide: These UAAP 81 Volleyball Stars Get Real On Embracing Their Truest Selves