PBA temporarily halts Philippine Cup with ECQ coming

The PBA announced that it will temporarily halt its 2021 Philippine Cup schedule starting August 4, Wednesday.

In a release issued Tuesday morning, the league said it will suspend its games "in support of the government's directive in addressing the unwanted rise of COVID-19 Delta variant infections."

Moreover, the PBA said the shift to a more stringent general community quarantine (GCQ with heightened and additional restrictions over the National Capital Region up to August 5 prompted the postponement. The stricter enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) will be in effect from August 6 to 20.

The league has yet to hear from the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF EID) and the Department of Health (DOH) in terms of the league's request to move the games to Lipa, Batangas once ECQ takes effect on August 6.

Commissioner Willie Marcial on Saturday said the league had already submitted a letter to the Department of Health (DOH) Friday last week.

"We wrote a letter to the DOH for a request to play outside NCR if the restrictions won't allow us to play within Metro Manila. We cited Lipa, Batangas as the location, and a new court will be prepared for us," Marcial shared to ESPN5.

"We're also talking to Lipa officials, and we asked if we could play under a closed-circuit format. We're just waiting for an answer," he added.

There were a total of 8,167 new COVID-19 cases on Monday -- the fourth straight day that the number breached the 8,000 mark, and the first time it happened since May this year.