At the Sta. Rosa City Sports Complex on Saturday, Akari will play its first match of the season against Cignal to kick off the return of the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference. This year’s Finals series will be the first to be played as a best-of-five tournament.
At 5:30 p.m., the ninth and newest PVL squad, the Power Chargers, will compete against the HD Spikers, who have won the bronze medal the previous two years in a row.
In the meanwhile, PLDT and United Auctioneers-Army will lift the curtain at 2:30 p.m. in preparation for the return of the event with an international flair after a hiatus of three years.
When Akari takes on Cignal, coached by Tai Bierria, the team is pinning its hopes on Dominican Republic immigrant Prisilla Rivera.
When the Lady Troopers go up against the towering High Speed Hitters, who are led by Elena Savkina, they have a new team sponsor and reinforcement in the form of Laura Condotta. This gives them an advantage.
Meanwhile, F2 Logistics, which participated in the last conference but did not win, will make its return to competition on October 11 at 2:30 p.m. versus Chery Tiggo at the PhilSports Arena. This will be followed by the reigning champion Petro Gazz’s matchup against Choco Mucho at 5:30 p.m.
Jelena Cvijovic, who plays for Chery Tiggo, will be facing The Cargo Movers’ Kalei Mau and Lindsay Stalzer, both of whom hail from the United States.
The reigning champions of the Reinforced Conference, the Angels, will begin their title defense against the Flying Titans, who will be headed by Odina Aliyeva. The Angels will be represented by Lindsey Vander Weide, a player from Canada.
Import Yeliz Basa will be joining forces with Alyssa Valdez, Tots Carlos, and Jema Galanza for Creamline’s grand slam attempt against PLDT on Thursday at the same site in Pasig City. Creamline has already won the first two conferences of the tournament.
An early marquee match between F2 Logistics and Choco Mucho will take place following the game between Creamline and PLDT.
The top four teams following the eliminations that take place in a single round on November 19 will go on to the semifinals round, which will also be played in a manner similar to a single round robin.
The FIVB classification system will be used to break any ties that may occur in the standings; hence, there will be no postseason play if there is a tie in the standings.
PVL Commissioner Tonyboy Liao stated that their clubs want a longer series, which resulted in the decision to have the top two teams of the semis round compete in a best-of-five finals series for the first time in league history. In contrast, the third and fourth seed will compete in a best-of-three bronze series.
The league will hold its events over four different locations, two of which being the Mall of Asia Arena and the Ynares Center in Antipolo.
On October 18, at the PhilSports Arena, Creamline and Petro Gazz will resume their long-running competition against one another.
On November 5, the much-anticipated match between Mau and Valdez will take place as F2 Logistics and Creamline will be competing against one another for the first time. However, the PVL has not yet disclosed the location of the event.
On November 17, at MOA Arena, the sibling teams Choco Mucho and Creamline will compete against one another once again.
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