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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

MPBL sees silver lining in completing season

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THE Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) could complete its shuttered 2019-2020 season if the league follows the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) model at the Clark bubble.

Vince Dizon, the deputy chief implementer of the National Action Plan Against Covid-19, told the recent Malacañang Press Briefing that MPBL’s application to resume action will be tackled this week by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).

“Just like what we did in the successful PBA bubble last year, I think we can do our sports bubble successfully [including the resumption of the MPBL],” Dizon said. “We will follow and build on the model protocols from the PBA bubble, so I think they can make it.”

MPBL legal chief consultant Atty. Brando Viernesto and commissioner Kenneth Duremdes said they are willing to apply the PBA bubble.

“We already wrote the IATF and DOH [Department of Health] last month and we’re just waiting for the result,” Viernesto said. “Once we’re okay with the IATF, we can resume the postponed season. Our priority is to secure permission to proceed first.”

The MPBL has yet to play Game Five of the semifinals matches between the Northern division’s of San Juan Knights and Makati City Skyscrappers and the Southern division’s Davao Occidental Tigers and the Basilan Steels. The finals will be a best-of-three.

The PBA bubble in Clark included the Quest Hotel as the entire league entourage’s home and the Angeles University Foundation Gym as the playing venue. No one was allowed to enter or leave the bubble and only two cases of Covid-19 infection were recorded.

Duremdes said he is hoping the IATF would approve their application despite the MPBL’s amateur status. The IATF allows only professional sports to hold tournaments during the pandemic.

“We are just the same basketball league—amateur or professional—so I am confident we will be allowed to play because we will do the same protocols,” Duremdes said.

Duremdes said they are targeting a March 1 resumption in Subic and a June start for the 2021 to 2022 season.

Read full article on BusinessMirror

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