The Philippine Superliga (PSL) is set to roll out its very first collegiate tournament when its All-Filipino Conference fires off Oct. 30.
PSL chairman Philip Ella Juico said the PSL Collegiate Grand Slam (CGS) promises to be another action-packed battle as it features the country’s brightest collegiate players in preparation for their potential career in the semi-professional league.
The tournament will be played every Saturday and will be shown live in the league’s official broadcast partner in ESPN5, AksyonTV and sports5.ph.
PSL rules will also be applied and teams will be given a chance to use the challenge system to make sure that the officiating will be at par with international standard.
So far, a total of six teams in University of the Philippines (UP), Far Eastern University, University of the East (UE), University of Santo Tomas (UST), De La Salle University-Dasmarinas and Colegio San Agustin (Binan selection) are already confirmed to join the inaugural tourney.
Juico said they expect more teams to jump in when the tourney completely goes full blast next year.
“We want to explore the possibility of having a strong collegiate league,” said Juico, a former Philippine Sports Commission chairman and president of the Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association.
“We have six teams in our inaugural conference. But we expect more college squads to join as soon as we get this tournament off the ground.”
Having collegiate teams in a regular tournament is nothing new for the PSL.
In the past, collegiate squads like University of Perpetual Help Dalta System, UST, UP and UE were given the chance to join in the Invitational Conference.
But with the formation of the CGS, the collegiate field will be very competitive as there would be a division solely dedicated to young players who are looking to play in the country’s most prestigious club league in the future.
“We expect these young players to join the club ranks in the next couple of years. That’s why we realized that we should develop them this early and prepare them for the tough grind ahead,” said Juico.