The Philippine men’s national team will get a taste of international competition ahead of the 30th Southeast Asian Games that the country will host in November.
Head coach Dante Alinsunurin confirmed the Nationals’ participation in the 2019 Thailand Open Sealect Tuna Volleyball Championship on July 4 to 10.
“Meron kaming lalaruan sa Thailand. [‘Yung] tinatawag nila na Sealect Tuna Thailand Open,” said Alinsunurin.
Originally, the Thailand Open is for players under 23-years-old only. However, the organizers approved of the Rebisco-Philippines’ management’s request to field the National team.
“Ngayon, Under-23 ‘yon tapos pinilit ko na hindi Under-23 ang ipadala, pinilit ko talaga na isama sila kasi wala naman kaming Under-23 talaga na binuo,” Alinsunurin explained. “Kung Under-23 aapat lang ‘yung member dito na pwede maglaro kaya sabi ko, pilitin natin na lahat makalaro.”
“Buti pumayag ‘yung organizers na maglaro kami doon. Nagpapasalamat ako na mabibigyan kami ng exposure sa labas,” added the tactician, who steered National University last year to a gold medal finish in the ASEAN University Games.
From the 20-man pool, Alinsunurin will trim his list to 14 players. However, the mentor cleared that those who will see action in Thailand does not guarantee them slots in the SEA Games roster.
Rebisco-Philippines will be flying to Thailand on July 3.