Saturday, 7 May 2011

FIBA officials welcome Philippines' hosting of Champions Cup - gmanews

Posted by chardyboy on Saturday, May 07, 2011 0 comments

source: gmanews

Two-high ranking officials of FIBA Asia, the governing body for basketball in the region, have stamped their seal of approval on the Philippines’ hosting of the 22nd Champions Cup from May 28 to June 5 at the PhilSports in Pasig.

“The 2011 calendar could not have got to a better start than with an event in the Philippines, where basketball is almost a religion," said Sheikh Saud bin Ali Al-Thani of Qatar, president of FIBA Asia.

Dato Yeoh Choo Hock, FIBA Asia secretary-general, shared the sentiment.

"The first event of every FIBA Asia calendar is always exciting. And when a country like Philippines hosts the first event, we are excited many times more," said Dato Yeoh. “The passion and fervor with which basketball is followed in the Philippines needs no elaboration."

The similarly-toned messages were received by Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas deputy executive director Bernie Atienza and relayed to SBP executive director Sonny Barrios.

"We are very much encouraged by the trust and confidence given to SBP by FIBA Asia by granting the hosting rights of the Champions Cup to the Philippines," said Barrios.

In turn, no less than SBP president Manny Pangilinan and vice chairman Ricky Vargas, the LOC chairman, are personally involved in seeing to it that everything is in place in time for the start of this prestigious international basketball event."

Echoed Atienza: “We are very much encouraged by the words expressed by the FIBA Asia officials, and inspire us even more to do our best in ensuring that the event will be a huge success."

Saud Sheikl said he expects the level of competition among the participating teams to be “as high and excellent as it has always been," noting, as well, that it has been some time since the country hosted a FIBA Asia event.

It is six years since I welcomed them back to our family of host cities," he said. “I am sure the basketball fans of Philippines are waiting with bated breath for the 22nd FIBA Asia Champions Cup to tip off. So are we."

That a Southeast Asian nation is playing host, Dato Yeoh said, is extra special.

“Personally for me, it is indeed a pleasure to witness a FIBA Asia event being held in a SEABA nation, which is very close to my heart," said Yeoh. “The Philippines has shown very encouraging signs in the recent past in upgrading their system of play to excel in FIBA
Asia events."

Meanwhile, the local organizing committee for the tournament will conduct its first orientation program for volunteers today, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., at the audio-visual room, GF PSC Bldg. A, PhilSports Complez, Meralco Ave. in Pasig City.

Handling the lecture series is Prof. Anthony Servinio of the College of St. Benilde. - RCJ, GMA News


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