Like any other leagues in the country, the UNTV Cup looks for a big comeback after a two-year stoppage due to Covid outbreak as it stages its 9th season on Monday at the Araneta Coliseum.
Known as “The League of Public Servants,” 12 government agencies, led by defending champion Department of Environment and Natural Resources, are eager to go back to the hard court and provide not only fun but also a ray of hope to their chosen charities.
UNTV President and CEO Dr. Daniel Razon, said the institution picked by the champion team shall receive a tax-free P3 million prize in the tournament that will have PBA great Atoy Co as commissioner.
“Apart from our mission to provide help to several charity institutions through basketball, we want to promote camaraderie among public servants and remind them the importance of wellness and fitness,” said Razon.
Supreme Court Associate Justice Midas Marquez, Senators Joel Villanueva, Bong Go and Sonny Angara, and former collegiate standouts will spearhead their respective teams with Marquez out to lead Judiciary to its first title this season.
Other agencies taking part in the once-a-week only tournament are two-time champion Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Dept. of Agriculture, National Housing Authority, Ombudsman, OP-Presidential Management Staff, PhilHealth, SSS and GSIS.
The lone game after an elaborate opening ceremony will be known only after the drawing of lots.
Popular young artists Darren and Lyca Gairanod have been invited to provide entertainment to an expected huge crowd.
Razon and Gerry Panghulan, vice president of Breakthrough and Milestones Productions International (BMPI/UNTV), are expected to welcome government officials and a bevy of guests.
The DENR Warriors are bidding to become the first back-to-back champions since the birth of the league in 2013.