Bryan Bagunas feels proud of Joshua Umandal as the 22-year-old outside hitter is set to play for Bani Jamra in Bahrain.
After all, Bagunas and Marck Espejo were the ones who paved the way for the likes of Umandal to get a shot at playing overseas.
“Yeah, it’s a good exposure for him,” said Oita Miyoshi’s third-year player Bagunas after their three-set loss to Panasonic in the V.League on Sunday.
“It’s good to see him play outside the Philippines because he can get good experience in an international league.”
And Bagunas believes that this would be a good stepping stone for Umandal to get to the V.League as well.
Back in late 2020, Espejo played for the same Bani Jamra team. After a good campaign in the 2020-21 season of the Isa bin Rashid Volleyball League, the 24-year-old product of Ateneo was called up once more to the V.League, signing with FC Tokyo.
For Bagunas, he hopes this would be the case as well for Umandal.
“Maybe soon he can play here because he is a player that has a lot of potential,” Bagunas remarked about Umandal, who took the cudgels for Rebisco PH during the 2021 Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship.
For his part, Bagunas hopes that he is still in the V.League when that time comes.
“As long as the team wants me here, I will stay in Japan,” said Bagunas, who is averaging 15.0 points per game so far this season.
“I love playing here and also the people here in Japan are really good.”