Sinulog Cup 2024 proceeds with Cesafi teams

UC IS IN. Cesafi Season 23 runners-up University of Cebu is electing to compete in the Sinulog Cup 2024.
UC IS IN. Cesafi Season 23 runners-up University of Cebu is electing to compete in the Sinulog Cup 2024. RONEX TOLIN

THE show will go on in the Sinulog Cup 2024 Basketball Tournament, as seven teams from the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) will still compete despite the memorandum that Cesafi commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy issued on Monday, Jan. 15, 2024 stating the tournament isn’t sanctioned by the league.

The memorandum’s message essentially warned Cesafi teams that they would be playing at their own risk, stating that they’d be left to their own devices if any incident happened during their participation in the Sinulog Cup.

However, this did not dissuade the Cesafi squads, as seven of the top eight will keep their commitment to competing in the Sinulog Cup. These teams are the University of Cebu Webmasters, the University of San Carlos Warriors, the University of San Jose-Recoletos Jaguars, the University of Southern Philippines Foundation Panthers, the Southwestern University-Phinma Cobras, the University of the Philippines-Cebu Fighting Maroons, and the Cebu Roosevelt Memorial Colleges Mustangs.

Sinulog Cup commissioner, lawyer Jave Mike Aton said the invitation they extended to the Cesafi teams is voluntary and their participation is entirely up to their own accord. However, Aton added that he believes the Cesafi teams will benefit greatly from competing against other high-level squads.

“With the invitation we have extended, the participation of the schools is merely voluntary; whether they accept or decline it, it’s up to them,” Aton said in a statement.

“The tournament format of the inclusion of schools with commercial teams is designed just like the winners in Sinulog sa Kabataan can participate in the Sinulog grand. In the context of our tournament, it has the goal of enhancing both the competitive aspect and the enjoyment for participants while ensuring fairness and safety.”

“I believe that exploring such possibilities will have positive implications for both the college players and the overall sports community. Allowing them the opportunity to compete with commercial players could serve as a valuable bridge to enhance their skills by facing higher levels of competition. This exposure and learnings can contribute significantly to their growth as athletes,” Aton continued.


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