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MPBL, PSL awaiting DOH, SBMA rules to resume play

MJ Blancaflor

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The Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) and the Philippine Superliga (PSL) are just awaiting the government’s guidelines so they can start with their respective tournaments through a bubble setting, similar to the setup of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) last year.

In a televised briefing on Friday, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said the two leagues could resume their games should it secure a go signal from the Department of Health (DOH) and the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

“We are waiting for protocols from the DOH and the approval from the SBMA, the venue for the sports bubble they are eyeing,” said Roque, also acting as the spokesperson of the pandemic task force.

“There is a high chance that they would resume their games,” he added.

Roque noted that the two leagues have sent their request to the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) to resume their operations.

“It had been acted upon. And as I said, only two conditions should be fulfilled so they can reopen their amateur leagues — the DOH’s protocols and the SBMA’s approval,” the official added.

The national government has allowed professional sports to resume operations as early as October last year, but can only do so in a bubble set-up at a low-risk area. On the other hand, amateur and collegiate sports have yet to go back to action.

The PBA bubble in Clark was hosted by the Quest Hotel, while games were staged at the Angeles University Foundation Gym.  Only two cases of Covid-19 infection were recorded in the bubble, where no one was allowed to enter or leave the premises.

PSL is eyeing to jumpstart its 2021 season in late February with a beach volleyball tourney in Subic, where the Southeast Asian Games also held its beach tournament in December 2019.

Meanwhile, MPBL is looking to resume its Lakan Cup Finals this June, which is also pegged to be held in a bubble.  (With Bea Micaller)

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