Not getting a callup for the AFF U-22 Championship earlier this year turned out to be a blessing in disguise for Filipino international goalkeeper Quincy Kammeraad as he shares his pride and excitement after receiving an invite for the Under-23 national team training camp this August in preparation for the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.
Formerly with Global FC at one point in his career as one of the club’s most promising goalkeeping prospects, 18-year-old Quincy is currently playing in Amsterdam’s AVV Zeeburgia’s U19 squad in the Netherlands, and is looking forward to join the initial pool in preparation for the SEA Games, which will be hosted in Manila later this year.
“It’s the biggest tournament for the U-23,” admitted the young sentry in an online interview last Monday night, July 22.
“The whole country, the Philippines, is (going to) watch it. So we have to give the Filipino community some results.”
From the time that the invite has been received direct from none other than Azkals Team Manager Mr. Dan Palami last week, young Kammeraad has felt a sense of pride for another opportunity to represent the Philippines’ colors in an important competition.
“You have to be proud to receive a callup from your country. It’s a different feeling from playing for your club or league games.”
“Playing for the country is different. Every game is different. The feeling is amazing! You hear the anthem play before the game.”
Training of the national squad is set to begin on August 13 which will run until August 29. However, due to some academic commitments back in the Netherlands, Quincy will be leaving three days earlier.
Ready for the challenges
Despite being given the chance to suit up for the Philippines, the Amsterdam-based keeper fully knows that it is just the first step, that bigger hurdles lie ahead, and that he needs to pour out the best of his abilities to secure a place in the final squad that will compete in the SEA Games proper.
“I think at the age of 18, it’s really tough because I’m still a youngster. Same as two years ago in the U-19, when I was 16. I have to earn the respect (of my teammates) because I’m one to two years younger than the rest of the guys, even three! So I have to work four or five times harder (as compared to) the other guys.”
Quincy also shared that the fact that he is currently building his footballing career and receiving his training in Europe makes the weight of expectations and responsibility from the team, especially as a goalkeeper, even greater.
“That’s how it is (when it comes to expectations). I know what they ask from me and I will do anything for the country.”
Currently in the midst of the preseason preparation for his Amsterdam-based club, his current training regimen could benefit him come the U-23 training sessions next month here in Manila.
Now standing at 1.85 meters (around 6’1″) Quincy Kammeraad is no stranger to the Philippine National Football Team setup with the 2018 AFF U-18 campaign being his most recent tournament where he was part of the squad. His eligibility to represent the Philippines lies with his mother, Cathy, who hails from Cebu.
The football tournament of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, which will be held within and the outskirts of Metro Manila, is believed to kick-off sometime in December which will be competed by U-23 teams of participating Southeast Asian nations.
Photo credit: Quincy Kammeraad|Facebook