SBP head Manny Pangilinan says hosting of Olympic qualifier will cost 'north of P200 million'
"That's how much we love this country," says SBP head Manny V. Pangilinan. Jerome Ascano

SAMAHANG Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) head Manny V. Pangilinan said they will be spending P200 million for the country's hosting of the Fiba Olympic Qualifying Tournament in July.

"North of P200 million," the businessman-sportsman said when asked how much it would take to host the July 5-10 qualifiers at the Mall of Asia Arena where Gilas Pilipinas will be gunning for a place in the Rio Olympics.

"That's how much we love this country," Pangilinan added, saying the ballpark figure consisted of the hosting budget, as well as the Fiba fees and operating cost of Gilas Pilipinas.

Despite the enormous cost, the SBP has aspired to make tickets to the Olympic qualifier as affordable as possible for the common hoops fan.

While VIP, patron, and lower box seats understandably sell higher, upper box tickets are set at P400, while general admission tickets are at P200 for the duration of the tournament from July 5 to 10.

“It’s to ensure access to all fans,” MVP Sports Foundation president Al Panlilio said in the press launch on Tuesday at Manila Peninsula.

Panlilio, who acts as chief operating officer of the local organizing committee for the tournament, said tickets will start selling on April 26.

VIP tickets sell for P10,000 each during the group stage, P12k in the semifinals, and P14k in the final, while Patron tickets are pegged at P8,500 in the group stage, P10k in the Final Four, and P12, in the final round.

Lower box tickets are priced at P6800, P8k, and P10k.

Season passes for the entire seven days are priced as follows: VIP – P47,000, P39k for patron, and P31,500 for lower box.

The SBP is also thinking about the feasibility of using a lottery system for selling tickets as they are expecting a high demand.

Those who can’t make it to the venue can settle watching the games live on TV5, which the Fiba board appointed as the exclusive broadcaster of the tournament.

“Rest assured, we will have a very great event, much better than what we’ve hosted in the past,” Panlilio said.

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