THE PHILIPPINE Sports Commission (PSC) hosted an inter-agency coordination meeting for the upcoming FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 on Tuesday, March 14, 2023 at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City.
PSC Chairman Richard Bachmann started by thanking everyone, particularly the sports leaders, local sports executives, government officials, representatives and stakeholders for responding to the call for a comprehensive plan and unified movement in making the best World Cup hosting possible.
A total of 37 national government agencies (NGAs), local government units (LGUs), private organizations and stakeholders were present during the three-hour discussion organized by the PSC, resting on its mandate to get full assistance from other government entities to perform its functions as stated in Section 24 of Republic Act 6847.
“Since basketball is the No. 1 sport in the Philippines, this hosting is vital not only in showcasing the best quality of the game to our kababayans and the world, but also in using sports as a universal opportunity to bond, connect and make impossibilities happen,” said Mr. Bachmann.
The Philippine government will be one of the hosts for the global event which is expected to further strengthen sports tourism in the country as observed from previous hostings of the World Cup.
Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) President Al Panlilio also extended his gratitude to the PSC for making the inter-agency meeting possible.
“Thank you, Chairman Dickie [Bachmann] for organizing this event. Thank you for coming. This is not for SBP alone, this is for the Philippines,” said Mr. Panlilio.
The FIBA World Cup hosting will be another check in history for the country since this will be the first time in 45 years of the prestigious tournament since its last hosting in 1978.
Thirty-two teams will compete in a total of 92 games across five venues in three different countries.
The group phase of the competition will be simultaneously played on Aug. 25-30, 2023 in Indonesia, Japan and the Philippines where the games will be held at the Smart Araneta Coliseum and SM MOA Arena.
The final phase of the competition is slated from Sept. 5-10 at the 55,000-seater Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.
Mr. Panlilio shared that one of the goals of the SBP is to put the Philippines on the map for the biggest attendance in the FIBA WC, by beating the long-standing World Cup final attendance record of 35,000 established when the US played Brazil at the Maracanazinho Stadium in Rio de Janeiro in 1954.
“May all our resolutions and agreements in this meeting be in accordance with the objective of creating an amazing basketball environment that unites people and encourages them to “Win for All,” declared Mr. Bachmann in closing his speech.
“This is it! We’ve been waiting for this for five years. This is the proper time that we put the Philippines back on the world map in this very crucial event. I encourage everyone to go out of their way to make this event a success,” expressed Senior Deputy Executive Secretary Hubert Guevara who spoke on behalf of the government and the Office of Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin.