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PBA coaches find new practice protocols 'good'

PBA teams are set to resume practices very soon. PBA Images (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--PBA coaches said on Friday that they are fine with the new practice protocols set up by the league during this COVID-19 pandemic.

The gaffers went to the PBA office in Quezon City for a meeting called up by Commissioner Willie Marcial, Deputy Commissioner Eric Castro, and Legal Counsel Melvin Mendoza regarding the new guidelines.

There, Marcial, Castro, and Mendoza revealed some more details about the practice protocols, which were approved last week by the IATF.

[Related Story: Basketball, football practices now allowed despite COVID-19 pandemic]

Players are now required to undergo COVID-19 testing three days before the resumption of practices. They will then undergo another testing after every 10 days.

The players are also advised to go straight to their homes right after practice.

The practice facilities should be disinfected using standard hospital procedures aside from the disinfection process before and after practice.

"I think it's good. All we have to do is follow it," said Ginebra coach Tim Cone through the PBA website.

"I think the PBA has put up an effective guideline to safeguard the players. It's just a matter of attitude from the players to maintain it," added NLEX coach Yeng Guiao.

Meanwhile, Marcial said that the PBA board of governors will convene on Saturday to discuss the protocols regarding the resumption of team scrimmages.

On when the clubs can do contact drills like scrimmages was among the concerns raised up during the coaches' briefing as the protocols set up are only limited to non-contact drills like individual conditioning.

But right now, San Miguel coach Leo Austria is already glad that the teams can resume practices in hopes for a possible September or October restart of the 45th season.

"We really missed each other a lot. Having the opportunity to be together and workout together is a relief for everybody," said Austria.

Guiao then raised up in the briefing the possibility of COVID-19 "cluster cases" that they could contract during practices. Marcial said that it will also be brought up in the board meeting.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno_