THE Philippine Senate gave full support to the country’s hosting of the 2016 the FIVB Women’s Club Championship set from October 18 to 21 at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Shortly after Malacanang entrusted government agencies to ensure the success of the FIVB-WCC, which the Philippines will host and take part in for the very first time, the Senate also rolled out the red carpet for the Philippine representative PSL-F2 Logistics squad late Monday.
Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel vowed to cheer for the squad, which will battle the best club teams in the world in this prestigious tourney organized by the Philippine Superliga and Eventcourt with TV5, Petron, Asics, BMW and F2 Logistics as official partners and Diamond Hotel as official residence.
Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano, local organizing committee honorary president, said it is only fitting for government to do everything to support the event, which he added would give the Philippines a good image in the world sporting stage.
PSL-F2 Logistics Manila will compete in a tough field composed of VakifBank Istanbul and Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul of Turkey, Hisamitsu Springs Kobe of Japan, Bangkok Glass of Thailand, Pomi Casalmaggiore of Italy, Volero Zurich of Switzerland and Rexona-Sesc Rio of Brazil.
Tickets sales for the event, according to MOA Arena representatives, have reached fever pitch since last week, but they assured that efforts have been made to accommodate more young fans, especially students and avid sports enthusiasts in line with the PSL’s continuing promotion of the sport of volleyball.
“The best club teams in the world will be arriving starting this week,” said Cayetano, referring to the spectacle that also has Rexona, Philippine Sports Commission, Mall of Asia Arena, Foton and Price Waterhouse Cooper as official sponsors and Turkish Airlines as official airlines.
“So more than supporting our team, we also support the people behind this massive endeavor. Rest assured that the government will be behind you in making this tournament a success,” he added.
Gracing the 20-minute Senate appearance were team captain Rachel Anne Daquis, Jovelyn Gonzaga, Mika Reyes, Jaja Santiago, Kim Fajardo, Frances Molina and Jen Reyes as well as Serbian mentor Moro Branislav, Japanese trainer Shun Takahashi and deputy Benson Bocboc.
Foreign players Ekaterina Krivets of Russia, Yevgeniya Nyukhalova of Ukraine, Tichaya Boonlert of Thailand, Yuri Fukuda of Japan, Stephanie Niemer and Lindsay Stalzer of the United States and Lynda Morales of Puerto Rico were also present.
PSL president Ramon “Tats” Suzara led the group, also backed by Mikasa, Gerflor and Jinling Sport, in the Senate visit.
“The support of the government is very overwhelming,” said Suzara, a ranking member of the Asian Volleyball Confederation and the International Volleyball Federation. “We’re very thankful to the Senate for boosting the morale of our team and the local organizing committee. We promise to do our best to make the country proud.”
“Also, the tickets are selling fast, proof that more and more Filipino volleyball fans want to see topnotch international action, which the PSL, with the support of the LVPI (Larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas, Inc.), is trying to bring into the country. We want our future players to reach higher levels of competition and exposing our players now in these tournaments, like we did in our previous Asian tournament endeavors, is vital to our growth as a volleyball nation,” Suzara added.