Expect more professional boxing tournaments to happen not only in the provinces but also in Metro Manila in the coming months after the Joint Administrative Order updated the supplemental guideline for sporting events.
Games and Amusements (GAB) chairman Baham Mitra said that he and his counterpart from the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman Butch Ramirez already signed the supplemental JAO last week and they already forwarded the papers to Department of Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, who is also the chairman of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).
Mitra said that the updated guideline is more detailed and understandable to make sure that athletes are safe during sports meet as there is still the threat of COVID-19.
“It’s a revised version, an easier version,” said Mitra in a message exchange with Manila Bulletin Monday, May 17.
The tripartite government agencies of GAB, PSC and DOH were formed in the middle of 2020 that crafted the guidelines for the resumption of sports activities, particularly for the professional level.
The holding of pro fights was among those that was given the green light by the government together with basketball, which resumed last September through the PBA bubble tournament in Pampanga.
“Nag-resume na ang boxing (since last year), yun talaga contact, may laway, dugo and full contact talaga (Boxing has resumed already, and it’s really a contact sport, there’s saliva, blood and it’s full contact),” said Mitra during a recent press briefing organized by GAB.
“Marami nang laban, nagkaroon na Cebu tatlo, sa General Santos City tatlo din and ganun din sa Luzon (There were so many fights, there were three in Cebu, three in General Santos and same in Luzon). Maybe there will be more of this.”
During the first quarter of 2021, there were a total of 10 pro fight events organized by various promoters in the province, but Dr. Jesusito Garcia said there would be more events once the supplemental issue is out.
“We’re waiting for the supplemental guideline,” said Garcia, who heads GAB’s contact sports division. He said that in the initial JAO guideline, boxing events can only be held in areas under the Modified General Community Quarantine or MGCQ, but it has been updated to General Community Quarantine or GCQ.
“Puwede na sa GCQ pero may requirements ito, like LGU permit first and foremost (It’s allowed in GCQ, but one of the requirements is to get permit from the LGU, that is first and foremost.”
Aside from that, Garcia said that the usual quarantine period of 14 days before competition and the negative results of two RT-PCR tests, the first should be a week before the event, while the second should be two days before the fights.