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SBP eyeing smooth hosting

SBP president Al Panlilio (middle), SBP executive director Sonny Barrios (left), FIBA World Cup deputy event director Erika Dy (second from left), PSA president Nelson Beltran (second from right) and FIBA World Cup local organizing committee chief John Lucas (right) are ready to host the FIBA Basketball World Cup next week.

With barely nine days left, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas is working hard to make sure that its hosting of the FIBA Basketball World Cup will be trouble-free.

World Cup deputy event director Erika Dy said several local government units are set to impose truck bans in the perimeter of the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan to make sure that the flow of traffic will be smooth for athletes, coaches and International
Basketball Federation officials during the opening of the World Cup.

Dy said they are also coordinating with the Commission on Higher Education to have hybrid classes on that day so that students will be able to take part of the historic event.

“So what we’ve done, we had meetings with different groups. We’ve identified different choke points. One example is the number of trucks on the North Luzon Expressway and we already have five LGU that implemented truck bans on that day,” Dy said during the weekly Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum on Tuesday.

“We were also talking to the Department of Education and CHEd yesterday and I think CHEd will encourage all universities to do online schooling on the 25th so a lot of people are pitching in this cause.”

The Philippines is eyeing to fill up the 55,000-seater Philippine Arena to break the attendance record of 32,616 fans during the championship match between the United States and Russia in the FIBA World Championship in Toronto in 1994.

SBP president Al Panlilio said he is optimistic it can be pulled off on opening day as 400 buses will be deployed to go to pick-up points at the Cloverleaf Balintawak, One Ayala in Makati, Bonifacio Global City, Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange, Araneta City, Trinoma, Mall of Asia, Market! Market! and SM North in Quezon City, SM Megamall, SM Baliwag in Bulacan and SM Clark and SM Pampanga.

“We want to achieve the 50,000 mark, at least. That’s the reason why we decided to keep a game in Philippine Arena. That’s the objective: To put the Philippines on the map in terms of gate attendance,” Panlilio said.

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