May 02, 2021

Batangas training for PBA teams: First step done

THE PBA has got word from Batangas City that the PBA ball clubs are more than welcome to hold practices in the city's gymnasiums in preparation for the league's targeted June kickoff.

The two entities have had initial talks on the matter through phone conversation among PBA commissioner Willie Marcial, Batangas City Mayor Beverley Dimacuha and Congressman Marvey Marino.

"Okay na ang LGU (local government unit). JAO (Joint Administrative Order from the Department of Health, Games and Amusements Board, and Philippine Sports Commission) na lang, and maybe our teams can start practices middle of May," said Marcial.

Marcial will personally meet Dimacuha and Marino in the next few days to set the protocols that will guide the ball clubs that will opt to train in Batangas.

Dimacuha and Marino have committed the Batangas City Coliseum and the Batangas State University Gym. The PBA have played games in these two venues in the past.

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Marcial said six to seven teams are eyeing Batangas training while one or two are interested to accept invitation by Ilocos Norte Governor Matthew Manotoc for a camp in Laoag.

San Miguel Corp. sports director and Barangay Ginebra governor Alfrancis Chua bats for Batangas for its proximity and accessibility.

Strict quarantine measures bar PBA teams from team activities in the National Capital City and the nearby provinces of Bulacan, Laguna, Rizal and Cavite, prompting the PBA to look for alternative venues elsewhere.

PBA officials want the teams to start holding scrimmages in May, with hopes of kicking off Season 46 Philippine Cup by June.

Marcial also had a phone talk with GAB chairman Abraham Mitra Saturday.

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"Chairman Baham said he will review the protocols and guidelines for each of the different quarantine levels," said Marcial.

Batangas is currently at general community quarantine. (SB)