SBP reveals high demand for tickets to 'choice seats' in Manila Olympic qualifiers
SBP head Manny V. Pangilinan precisely wanted the upper box, general admission seats to be affordable, says executive director Sonny Barrios. Jerome Ascano

ARE the tickets for the Fiba Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila reasonably priced?

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) definitely thinks so, saying it believes ticket prices for the Fiba Olympic Qualifying Tournament are reasonable considering the magnitude of the event and the quality of basketball the Filipino fans are bound to witness first hand.

Amidst mixed reactions about the ticket prices for the July 5 to 10 cagefest that will feature Gilas Pilipinas against some of the world’s best, SBP executive director Renauld ‘Sonny’ Barrios said ticket costs for the Fiba OQT were carefully studied by their group before coming out with the final pricing.

Barrios said the SBP also compared the costs of tickets to big events such as Game Seven of a PBA Philippine Cup finals series, an Ateneo-La Salle contest, and even the 2013 Fiba-Asia Championship before coming up with the ticket prices.

"We didn’t arrive at the prices arbitrarily or whimsically. We raised it against our 2013 Fiba-Asia Championship which, of course, was lower dahil Fiba-Asia ‘yun. Eto is world class," Barrios said.

"We took everything into consideration," he added.

Barrios also noted the quality of competition that will come to Manila to vie for a berth in the 2016 Rio De Janeiro Olympics is worth the price tag.

"Kumbaga, it’s Madonna ika nga, if I may use the analogy," he said.

Tickets for Gilas Pilipinas games in the preliminary round against France on July 5 and New Zealand on July 6 at the Mall of Asia Arena are priced at P10,000 for the VIP section, P8,500 for patron, and P6,800 for lower box.

Season passes, on the other hand, are worth P47,000, P39,500, and P31,500 for the VIP, patron, and lower box sections, respectively.

Barrios said it was SBP president Manny V. Pangilinan who ordered that upper box and general admission seats be sold at P400 and P200, respectively, to make the event afordable to the public.

"In fact, mahigpit na bilin ni Mr. Pangilinan na make sure na affordable ‘yung tickets to most of the basketball fans," said Barrios.

Despite what could be a stiff price to some, Barrios said the 'choice seats' are still gettinga lot of interest as the first day of selling of tickets on April 26 draws near.

"The truth is ang daming nag-iinquire at nagpapa-reserve from our end. Sa MOA, same ang feedback. Tingnan natin how the overall market will behave," Barrios said.


"’Yung choice seats, ika nga, because they are choice seats, maaaring sa iba namamahalan, pero ang feedback sa amin, maraming gustong bumili ng ticket," he added.

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