SOME senior athletes in the cancelled NCAA season will have a chance to see action in Season 96.
Peter Cayco, the NCAA Season 95 Management Committee chair for host Arellano, bared that the Mancom has approved the provision which would give the graduating players one more year after their respective tournaments were cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I endorsed loosening up the eligibility requirements for Season 96 and it was approved by the Mancom," Cayco said in the online Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum on Tuesday.
"Athletes who would've played their final years in Season 95 but their tournaments did not get off the ground will be allowed to participate for one more year. Same yun sa mga events na di nalaro or have not yet started, plus one year sila."
That means that volleyball players such as twins Nieza and Ela Viray of San Beda, Yanca Tripoli of Perpetual, and Charm Simborio of Letran will get to extend their collegiate careers.
"I think it's just right kasi sayang, sang taon sila nag-train tapos hindi natuloy ang tournament nila," said Cayco.
Arellano star Regine Arocha would've been included in the list, but she has earlier announced of her decision to leave the Lady Chiefs and has since signed with Sta. Lucia in the Philippine Superliga (PSL).
Not all seniors are covered, though.
"Wag lang yung naka-graduate na," said Cayco. "Ang apektado naman dito husto is yung sa last playing year at yung age factor. Both of them will be given one more year."
Cayco also added that for athletes whose sports were not included in the four mandatory sports, namely basketball, volleyball, track and field, and swimming, their playing years won't be counted this Season 96.
"That would be unfair for them," he said. "That's included in our discussions. Same yun sa mga events na hindi tatakbo, hindi counted yung playing years."
For the rookies in Season 95, the cancelled tournaments are considered "season zero."
"Mag-start ang season nila next year," said Cayco, although he said that these neophytes will no longer be in the running for the Rookie of the Year honors come Season 96.