BUOYED by the tremendous success of last year’s Metro Basketball Tournament themed “Isang Liga, Isang Laro Para sa Pagbabago”, the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Metro Manila Council (MMC) have agreed to continue to promote sports activities among the youth of the 17 cities and municipalities in Metro Manila this year.
MMDA Chairman Danny Lim said the heads of local government units (LGUs) under the MMDA were encouraged by the results of last year’s 24-year-old-and-under and 16-year-old-and-under basketball tournaments and decided to continue with the programs initiated by Metroball Basketball Tournament (MBT) Director and PBA Globalport Batang Pier Team Manager Bonnie Tan.
“Pursuant to President Duterte’s campaign to promote sports and eradicate illegal drug use and the city mayor’s desire to raise the level of sports competitions, the MMDA and the MMC will again jointly host the Metro Manila-wide basketball and volleyball competitions this year,” said Chairman Lim.
Lim re-appointed Tan as overall Tournament Director for both basketball (24-under and 17-under) and the inaugural volleyball (women/girls) competitions under the Metroball Volleyball Tournament are set to be also participated in by the 17 cities and municipalities under the MMDA and MMC.
Lim and Tan recently signed a long-term Memorandum of Agreement for the staging anew of the Metro Manila SportsFest during a courtesy call at the MMDA office in Makati last Thursday. Among those who witnessed the MOA signing were MMDA Chief of Staff Jojo Garcia, MMDA Sports Director Atty. Crisanto Saruca Jr. and other MBT officials which included finance manager Waiyip Chong and deputy tournament director Fidel Mangonon III.
“I’m truly grateful to the Metro Manila Council headed by the MMDA and the entire 17 Metro Manila City mayors for again entrusting us with their sports programs. Together we shall spearhead to PROMOTE SPORTS, DEVELOP home grown talents, DISCOVER and NURTURE future Filipino Athletes in all our cities,” said Tan.
The junior and senior basketball and volleyball tournaments are slated to kick off simultaneously on April 15 and the inaugural PBA Metro Open tournament, to be staged in partnership with the Philippine Basketball Association, has been calendared to begin this coming June.
The inaugural MBT cage tourneys was held in two age divisions last year, with Marikina Shoelanders topping the Junior Division (boys 16-under) category last June and Mandaluyong Tigers ruling the Seniors (men’s 24-under division).
Marikina Shoelanders, handled by coach Elvis Tolentino, and supported by Mayor Marcy Teodoro, defeated Paranaque City Green Berets, 64-60, in their championship match at the San Andres Sports Complex.
Last November, Mandaluyong Tigers rallied to beat Quezon City Stars in a thrilling contest, 69-68, to capture the Senior Division (24-under) crown. Mandaluyong City, headed by Mayor Menchie Abalos and head coach Johnedel Cardel, earlier topped the South division while Quezon City Stars of Mayor Herbert Bautista ruled the North Division.
The MBT also had a successful All-Star Day Oct. 26 last year at the San Andres Sports Complex wherein South defeated North 113-103 in the Seniors All-Star Game and the MBT-MMDA Organizers, led by MBT Commissioner Pido Jarencio, defeating the LGU All-Stars 140-129 apart from the inaugural skills competitions among the Seniors All-Stars.
Other information about the MBT and MVT leagues are available in the MMSF’s website (http://mmsf.web.geniussports.com/category/all-news/) and social media accounts: Facebook page- MMSportsFest; Twitter– @MMSportsFestPH. The MBT/MVT leagues can also be reached through their email account- firstname.lastname@example.org.