|The PVL is now officially a pro league! Nikki Collantes (file photo)|
MANILA—The Philippines' premier club volleyball league is now professional by name.
The PVL formally announced on Friday night that it is turning pro starting with the 2021 season.
According to Sports Vision chief Ricky Palou, whose agency oversees the PVL, it took some deliberations before ultimately deciding to take the pro route finally.
"After a series of discussion, back and forth Viber messages and emails, we're finally able to decide once and for all to turn the PVL into a professional league," Palou said in an online press conference.
Former Games and Amusements Board commissioner Fritz Gaston, whose daughter Ponggay is set to join Choco Mucho next year, added that he is happy that the league is finally taking the GAB sanctioning after a series of previous talks with Palou.
"It's been long overdue," Gaston said.
The PVL, formerly known as the Shakey's V-League, began as a collegiate league in 2004 but has begun accepting clubs by 2011, eventually leading to Gaston discussing to his fellow former Ateneo basketball star the possibility of making it de jure pro.
Palou admitted that he was hesitant on going pro sooner due to the fact that most of the players then were still playing college volleyball in the NCAA and the UAAP.
But following a joint resolution by GAB and the Philippine Sports Commission on distinguishing pro and amateur sports, the PVL finally opted to push for the pro status.
"We feel that we have enough players to turn professional," Palou added, further saying that this development is a "milestone" in the 16-year-old league.
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