COACH Dante Alinsunurin was satisfied with the performance of his team in the Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship and he is eager to keep their momentum going once they got home.
The Philippine men’s volleyball team placed ninth, ending a four-game skid in Pool B with a convincing five-set win over Sri Lanka’s CEB Sports Club, 25-14, 22-25, 25-18, 21-25, 15-11, in the classification on Wednesday.
Despite their cellar-dweller finish in the tournament, Alinsunurin was happy with the gallant stand of his wards against the top teams in the continent, especially coming off a long layoff due to the pandemic.
“Satisfied naman kami sa performance ng team dahil ito yung first competition na sinalihan namin after SEA Games,” he told Spin.ph. “Ang maganda dito nagkaroon kami ng opportunity na makapaglaro at maka-experience sa level ng competition sa Asia.”
The Filipino Spikers missed stars Marck Espejo and Bryan Bagunas, who are currently in Japan, but Jao Umandal rose to the occasion, joining hands with veterans spikers Mark Alfafara and John Vic De Guzman in leading the charge.
The team also drew ample contributions from new members Ysay Marasigan, JP Bugaoan, Nico Almendras and libero Manuel Sumanguid.
Alinsunurin, who steered the squad with a silver medal finish in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, was impressed with his wards’ team work and fluid offense despite having a limited preparation.
“Lahat ng players nagcontribute na kahit sino ipasok ko nakakatulong sa team. Nakita ko dito na mas tumaas ang percentage namin sa offense,” he said.
What's next for PH spikers
The national team head coach added that they need to work double time in service-reception and floor defense.
That’s why he is proposing to the Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) to conduct scrimmages against the teams joining in the Men’s Champions League in November.
“Nagrequest na ko na magstart na ulit ng training at magkaroon exhibtion games sa different team na maglalaro sa Champions League pagbalik namin ng Pilipinas,” Alinsunurin said.
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