Coach Tai’s exit from Ateneo: Due to more than personal reasons

Beatrice Go
Coach Tai’s exit from Ateneo: Due to more than personal reasons

Josh Albelda

Coach Tai will be heading home to Thailand after 4 years with Ateneo de Manila University

MANILA, Philippines – After spending 4 years as the head coach of the Ateneo Women’s Volleyball and leading them to two championships, Coach Anursorn “Tai” Bundit was dismissed from his coaching position. 

An unidentified source confirmed with Rappler on Saturday, October 28, that Bundit was leaving the university due to personal reasons and that Assistant Coach Sherwin Meneses will serve as the interim head coach. 

Aside from the Thai coach’s desire to spend more time with his family and two young twins, his reasons also included the friction that has been developing between him and the Ateneo Lady Eagles. 

Irreconcilable differences

Despite being able to lead the blue and white to two championships and 4 finals appearances from Season 76 to 79, friction and irreconcilable differences between the Lady Eagles and Bundit have made the relationship turn sour. 

In a phone interview with Rappler late Sunday, October 29, the unidentified source said that complaints about training being “too hard” and the lack of communication from Bundit made it difficult for the Lady Eagles to cope with his Thai style of training. 

During their campaign in the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Collegiate Conference, the Lady Eagles suffered numerous injuries while undergoing Coach Tai’s training program this year. 

This included Jho Maraguinot’s left foot sprain, Ana Gopico’s hamstring injury, and Kim Gequillana’s left knee injury, where she was seen hauled off on a stretcher during a PVL match against the Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws. 

The Lady Eagles blamed these injuries on Bundit’s conditioning program. 

“To them, Kim (Gequillana)’s injury was the last straw,” said the source. 

The Lady Eagles demanded that the conditioning program be handled by the training unit of the Moro Lorenze Sports Complex (Moro) – like most Ateneo sports teams – instead of Coach Tai.

A compromise was reached: the conditioning program was handed to Moro but the volleyball training proper would still be under Bundit, as they would still need to respect the progam of the head coach. 

However, the differences in expectations continued to rock the boat as Coach Tai was dissatisfied with the performance of the Lady Eagles during training. 

Yung mali naman ni Coach Tai is ‘pag hindi nagagawa ng mga girls yung training niya, sasabihin niya: ‘I thought Moro good, why can’t you do?'” explained the source. (The wrong thing about Coach Tai is that if the girls can’t do what he asks, he would say: I thought Moro good, why can’t you do?)

Thoroughly thought of

Contrary to reports saying that Coach Tai’s dismissal was sudden, the Ateneo women’s volleyball management discussed Bundit’s situation with the Lady Eagles in a series of meetings to arrive at the decision of letting him go. 

An overhaul of the volleyball program will be made in accordance with the situation. 

A meeting on Monday, October 30, is part of school protocol for an exit interview with University President, Fr Jett Villarin. 

In addition to Michelle Morente’s transfer to De La Salle University (DLSU) and setter Jia Morado’s graduation from the university, the Ateneo Lady Eagles will now be missing the services of their happy dancing coach, who brought the “happy-happy” and “heart-strong” mentality to the team. –




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Beatrice Go

More commonly known as Bee, Beatrice Go is a multimedia sports reporter for Rappler, who covers Philippine sports governance, national teams, football, and the UAAP. Stay tuned for her news and features on Philippine sports and videos like the Rappler Athlete’s Corner and Rappler Sports Timeout.