COVID-19 task force approves Superliga beach volleyball 'bubble'

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 16 2020 04:09 PM

MANILA - The inter-agency task force leading the country's COVID-19 pandemic response has allowed the Philippine Superliga to hold a beach volleyball tournament, Malacañang said Friday.

The IATF, which met Thursday, approved "the holding of a beach volleyball tournament by the Philippine Super Liga under a 'sports bubble concept'," Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.

"Ibig sabihin po mananatili sila doon sa lugar kung saan sila po magkakaroon ng volleyball tournament," he added in a Laging Handa press briefing.

(This means that they will stay in the area where they will hold the volleyball tournament.)

Sport bubbles are tightly controlled campus environments allowing tournaments during the coronavirus pandemic. They are difficult to organize, expensive to maintain and emotionally taxing on players, who cannot return to their homes for weeks or months at a time, according to a New York Times Report.

Aside from the Super Liga bubble, the IATF also approved the operation of off-track horse race betting stations in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ) or lower, said Roque.

Licensed cockpits are also allowed to operate in areas under MGCQ or lower, he said.

The health department on Thursday recorded 2,261 novel coronavirus infections and 50 additional deaths.

In a bulletin, the agency said total confirmed cases have increased to 348,698 while deaths reached 6,497, next only to Indonesia for the most COVID-19 casualties in the Southeast Asia region.

The unrelenting first wave of infections since March has limited the Philippines' ability to fully reopen businesses, and restart domestic and international tourism. - With a report from Reuters