9 teams to see action in PSL Grand Prix

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 18 2017 03:49 PM

The PSL coaches pose ahead of the Grand Prix. Josh Albelda, ABS-CBN Sports

MANILA, Philippines – A record nine squads, including a guest collegiate team, will see action in the 2017 Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix that unfolds on October 21 at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.

The Grand Prix features a new title sponsor in Chooks-to-Go as well as several new innovations, including a new tablet system for substitutions, timeouts, and video challenges that will be implemented starting in the semifinals.

"This is the biggest PSL Grand Prix ever," PSL president Ramon "Tats" Suzara said in a press conference on Wednesday. "We have nine teams… iba ang laro dito."

Returning to defend their crown are the Foton Tornadoes, still powered by Jaja Santiago but now featuring new imports.

"There is very, very good competition this year," Foton coach Moro Branislav said. "I'm just preparing my team, and we'll see how we finish."

Giving them a challenge are last year's runners-up, the Petron Blaze XCS, who will now have the services of former Foton star Lindsay Stalzer.

The F2 Logistics, Generika-Ayala Lifesavers, the Cignal HD Spikers, Sta. Lucia Realtors, and Cocolife Asset Managers will also try to knock the crown off the Tornadoes' heads.

The PSL welcomes two new teams in the Grand Prix in the Iriga City Oragons, and the University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses who are using the tournament as their preparation for the upcoming UAAP women's volleyball wars.

Action officially starts on October 21, with Foton taking on Cignal HD and Petron facing off against Generika-Ayala.

But the opening ceremony will be on October 28, also at the same San Juan venue. On the same day, there will be a meet-and-greet with Karch Kiraly, the head coach of the United States women's volleyball team.

PSL coaches will also have the opportunity to learn from Kiraly in a one-day coaching clinic on October 27. 

(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.)