THE Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) has declined to take part in the Dubai Expo 2020, citing the rise of Covid-19 cases in the country as its reason for begging off.

Dubai Expo 2020 is a trade fair featuring innovations and various products from different countries around the world and is set from Oct. 1, 2021, up to March 31 of this year.

The invite was extended by Kevin Brown, the Dubai Expo 2020’s planning and management vice president, for the league to send teams to Dubai to compete in a mini-tournament on Jan. 27 to 30 at the Expo Sports Arena.

However, with the current Governors’ Cup being placed on hold because of the health crisis, the league politely begged off from participating in the said event. A second invite was sent, asking if the PBA can send teams in late March but the PBA held its ground.

“We were invited twice, first in January than this March. I told them we couldn’t make it,” PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said in a talk with Spin.ph. “We will be undergoing quarantine upon leaving and upon arrival, and vice versa. We can never be too careful,” he added.