Business World

PSL beach volleyball tournament takes place this weekend

- By Michael Angelo S. Murillo Senior Reporter

AFTER experienci­ng some delay, the Philippine Superliga (PSL) Beach Volleyball Challenge Cup finally pushes through this weekend at the sand courts of the Subic Bay Metropolit­an Authority in Zambales.

Originally set to take place in November, the tournament was deferred to a later date because of the impending threat by Typhoon Ulysses then.

The Challenge Cup, presented by Gatorade, will be a three-day event beginning on Friday and feature eight competing teams.

It will be the first volleyball event to take place since restrictio­ns were put in place by authoritie­s last year to guard against the coronaviru­s; something not lost to the organizers of the event, which is why they made sure they covered everything needed so as to ensure the safe conduct of the tournament. “Everything is in order. There are certain kinks to be ironed out, but the event is pushing through and the teams are ready,” said PSL Chairman Philip Ella Juico at the online Philippine Sportswrit­ers Associatio­n Forum on Tuesday as he spoke of the event and their plans for the league moving forward. Strict health protocols are put up for all players and personnel, numbering around 60 to 70, involved in the tournament to follow.

These include saliva tests to be done by the Red Cross Olongapo chapter. The PSL said initial tests of players and team staff have all yielded negative results, allowing them to train in the lead-up to the tournament proper.

Set to see action are two teams representi­ng Abanse Negrense and Sta. Lucia. Also competing are F2 Logistics, United Auctioneer­s, Inc. and Toby Sports. Kennedy Solar EnergyPetr­oGazz participat­es as a guest team.

A total of 24 matches will be played in the event, where teams will first see action in pool play. Those which will advance then play in the quarterfin­als, semifinals, and finals.

Games will be livestream­ed via YouTube and Instagram.

In pushing through with the event, Mr. Juico expressed hope that it paves the way for local volleyball to get back in the swing of things despite the coronaviru­s still an ongoing concern.

“This is a historic event for volleyball and non-profession­al sports since this is the first event that has been given permission by authoritie­s to stage a sports competitio­n.”

After beach volleyball, the PSL will begin work on resuming indoor tournament­s as well.

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