May 07, 2017 11:02 By Preechachan Wiriyanuparppong
Thailand’s ace spiker Wilavan Apinyapong married Nutthapon Kesaphan, a former setter of the Thai national men’s volleyball team, at her home in Nakhon Ratchasima with team-mates, including superstar Pleumjit Thinkaow, Onuma Sittirak and Malika Kanthong, and distinguished men and women from Thai volleyball fraternity present at the traditional wedding ceremony on Sunday.
The couple will hold their wedding reception at Bangkok University on May 20.
The 32-year-old Wilavan, known to Thai fans as Gift, has been the mainstay of the Thai national women’s volleyball team since 1997. She was named the team captain in 2008 and steered Thailand to a historic Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship title in Hanoi, Vietnam in 2009. The team went to repeat the feat in 2013 in Nakhon Ratchasima, where she claimed the Most Valuable Player award.
She also led Federbrau and Chang to the Asian Women’s Club Championship crown three times in a row (2009-2010-2011). She joined Bangkok Glass and helped them win the 2015 Asian Women’s Club Championship title in Vietnam.
She currently plays for Supreme Chonburi E-Tech Club and soon emerged as the backbone of the side. This year, Supreme Chonburi E-Tech stunned defending two-time champions Bangkok Glass to win the Thailand League and also the Thai-Denmark Super League.
Wilavan said marriage would not stop her from competing for the club and the nation, promising that her best years are ahead. She is expected to join the national team for the Montreux Volley Masters in Switzerland next month, the World Grand Prix in July and the World Championship Asian Qualification second round in Nakhon Pathom from September 20 to 24.