More foreign training, competitions for PMVT in 2020 -- LVPI

Mark Escarlote on Dec 11, 2019 08:59 PM
More foreign training, competitions for PMVT in 2020 -- LVPI
Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. assures the men's volleyball team of more foreign exposures next year. (Arvin Lim)

Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. is set to sit down with the Philippine men’s volleyball team coaching staff to plot out the squad’s schedule of training and international competitions for next year.

After surpassing expectations with its remarkable silver medal finish in the 30th Southeast Asian Games, the Dante Alinsunurin-coached squad is expected to participate in a number of foreign exposures.  

“Magmi-meet kami siguro third week ng January. I-plot natin ang buong taon,” said LVPI board chairman and national team program head Peter Cayco.

The men’s squad bannered the successful outing of the local governing body of volleyball with its first silver medal finish in 42 years and ending a 28-year wait for a podium finish in the biennial meet.     

Right after bowing to well-experienced Indonesia in straight sets in the gold medal match on Tuesday, Alinsunurin said that LVPI assures the squad that their hard work, despite being overshadowed by the more popular women’s division, will be rewarded with sufficient support from the association.  

“Kanina kinausap ako ni sir Peter, ang sabi niya magtuluy-tuloy ang training namin,” said Alinsunurin, who was formally introduced as head coach early March.  

The assurance was welcome news for the squad, who heading into the SEA Games trained continuously and consistently for eight months. As part of their preparation, the Nationals joined the Thailand Open Sealect Tuna Volleyball Championship last July where they won bronze and went on a 16-day training camp in Japan.   

“Yun ang hinihiling din namin na magtuluy-tuloy ang team na mag-training kasi importante talaga sa amin yun lalo na nasisimula pa lang kami,” said Alinsunurin. “Siyempre kung gusto talaga naming iangat ang laro namin kailangan talaga namin na January mag-start na kami [ng training]. Sana tuluy-tuloy na talaga.”

Behind main guns Marck Espejo and Bryan Bagunas and the impressive debut of young setter Joshua Retamar and Kim Malabunga, the Nationals climbed to the SEA Games semifinal with wins against Cambodia and Vietnam.

The Filipinos wrote history when they dethroned five-peat-seeking Thailand in a dramatic come-from-behind five-set victory to set up a gold medal match against their group stage tormentor Indonesians, whose experience and firepower proved too much for the young Nationals in the final.

But despite of the loss, the Nationals achieved their goal of making the country proud and bringing the spotlight to men’s volleyball.

 

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