PREMIER Volleyball League team captains — PVL

THE Premier Volleyball League (PVL) will hope to ride the momentum of its record-performance in its Open Conference early this year as it stages the PVL Invitational unfurling on July 9 at the Filoil Flying V Arena.

“We hope to sustain the momentum we gained in the Open Conference,” said PVL president Ricky Palou during Tuesday’s face-to-face Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum at the Century Park, Manila.

The country’s only professional volleyball league drew record crowd particularly in the playoff stage where all the venues they played for were either packed or near capacity.

The highest attendance in its history came in Game Two of the semifinal showdown between sibling rivals Creamline and Choco Mucho at the MOA Arena where 16,687 paying patrons graced the epic duel.

And that is the reason the league is bringing the Creamline-Choco Mucho elimination round game back to the MOA Arena on July 23 as well as the rest of its semifinals and finals games there.

“We’ve had problems last conference. That’s why we’re bringing the PVL to bigger venues during its crucial games,” said PVL commissioner Tonyboy Liao.

Open Conference third-placer Cignal HD and Army Black Mamba open up hostilities as the two collide at 2:30 p.m., followed by the duel between Choco Mucho and 2021 champion Chery Tiggo at 5:30 p.m.

Other teams also seeing action are PLDT and Petro Gazz while Japan’s Kobe Shinwa University and Chinese Taipei’s King Whale are the guest squads who will play straight in the round-robin semis.

Games will be aired live on One Sports (free-to-air Ch 41 and Cignal Ch 6) and One Sports+ (Cignal Ch 91 SD, Ch 261 HD) with both channels also available on Cignal’s OTT Platform, Cignal Play, with video on demand also available on the platform.

Matches will also be streamed on social media application KUMU and on the league’s official website Livestream of the games will also be accessible on Smart GigaPlay, a platform exclusively for Smart subscribers. — Joey Villar