MANILA, Philippines -- The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters are waiting for the government to ease quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila, instead of looking for practice venues in neighboring provinces.
The PBA and other professional leagues have already received the go-signal to start training again, but that resumption was delayed when President Rodrigo Duterte placed Metro Manila and nearby provinces under modified enhanced community quarantine from August 4 to 18.
"I think right now, we're just waiting for August 18," Rain or Shine coach Caloy Garcia said during an appearance on "2OT." "From there, we're gonna do the swab (testing) pa naman."
PBA commissioner Willie Marcial initially scheduled the teams to undergo swab testing on August 6-7, in the hopes of starting practices by August 12. The tests have been rescheduled to August 20-21.
Marcial previously said that teams can also opt to practice in areas under general community quarantine, which allows for individual workouts. In an interview with Dyan Castillejo of ABS-CBN News, he suggested Batangas as a province where teams can look for practice venues.
For Garcia, however, his team would much rather wait for the government to lift the strict lockdown in Metro Manila.
"If you're just gonna practice there and not play there, I don't see the point of going all the way to Tagaytay, Subic, mga ganoong mga lugar na pwede, where you can practice," he said.
When asked by host Magoo Marjon if the team is in "wait and see" mode, Garcia answered in the affirmative.
Rather than risk traveling to other provinces during the pandemic, the Elasto Painters will just continue the home workouts that they have been doing during the lockdown.
"In these next two weeks, we'll just be doing some workouts via Zoom or something," said Garcia. "Then, hope for the best on August 18."
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said on Thursday that President Rodrigo Duterte will announce fresh community quarantine classifications on Monday, August 17, a day before the lockdown expires.
Aside from Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal were placed under MECQ.
Roque has previously said that it was "highly unlikely" that Metro Manila and its neighboring provinces will remain under MECQ, due to depleted resources to respond to the pandemic.
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website).