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Proposed women’s league gains support

Gilas Pilipinas women's coach Patrick Aquino welcomes the PBA's plans of creating a league for lady ballers. (Photo from FIBA)

Gilas Pilipinas Women squad head coach Patrick Aquino threw its full support behind the proposed creation of a professional basketball league for women.

In an interview with Daily Tribune, Aquino said the plan of Philippine Basketball Association commissioner Willie Marcial of establishing a pro league for women will put the country at par with Southeast Asian powerhouse Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.

In fact, due to their comprehensive program and constant exposure to intense competition, the Indonesians were able to dethrone the Filipinas in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games in Phnom Penh.

Aquino said with the PBA taking the helm, creating a women’s pro league will be very possible.

“The PBA is a sustainable league,” said Aquino, also the program director of women’s basketball of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas.

“I think it would help immensely in the development of women’s basketball in the country as it would widen the pool of players who will be available to represent us in the future.”

“We are already behind our rival nations in the region, but with the PBA, I think we can establish something that would keep us at par with other countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.”

During the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum last Tuesday, Marcial floated the idea of establishing a pro league for women.

He said similar to their very successful 3×3 program, which aims to earn ranking points for the Olympics, they will start the women’s pro league with a 3×3 tourney before eventually expanding it to 5-on-5.

He added that establishing a women’s league has been on his agenda since his early days as chief of Asia’s first professional basketball league.

“I talked to somebody three months ago about the possibilities of having a 3×3 tournament for women in the PBA,” Marcial said.

“It’s on the table. I have been planning to have a similar league such as the 3×3 tournament for women since my early days as commissioner.”

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