Basketball, football teams may now resume training sessions

MANILA, Philippines — The government has allowed the resumption of training sessions for basketball and football teams.

In a televised press briefing Friday, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque announced that Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) approved the recommendation of the Philippine Sports Commission and the Games and Amusements Board (GAB) to allow teams to resume practice and conditioning sessions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Pinayagan po yung practice and conditioning ng basketball at saka ng football sang-ayon po sa request ng PBA at ng ibang mga football associations,” Roque said.

(Practice and conditioning of basketball and football teams have been approved following the appeal of the PBA and other football associations.)

Under the GAB’s proposal, practices are set to be limited to five persons in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ) like Metro Manila while up to 10 will be allowed modified GCQ areas.

The PBA — which provides the country’s most popular sports entertainment— put its season on hold last March 11, just three days after opening its 45th season, due to the coronavirus pandemic.


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Kim Atienza gets creative with replies to ABS-CBN bashers by giving them trivia

Kim Atienza (Image: Instagram/@kuyakim_atienza(

Staying true to his branding as an educational TV show host, Kim Atienza came up with a creative way to clap back at bashers criticizing the media giant ABS-CBN amid its bid for franchise renewal in Congress.

Using the hashtag #KuyaKimTrivia, Atienza responded to comments about the TV network on Twitter by giving out trivia about the origins of several terms including as*hole, corny and the middle finger.

ABS-CBN went off the air last May after the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) ordered it to stop broadcasting operations after its legislative franchise expired. On June 30, NTC also ordered the shutdown of Sky Direct, which is the direct broadcast satellite service of the TV network’s subsidiary Sky Cable Corp.

Atienza shared a Bible verse on his Twitter page last Monday, June 29. He prayed that God, if it is His will, would “soften the hearts of those who hate ABS” and that “Congress and the powers that be (would)  give us our franchise.” Atienza’s post earned harsh feedback from some netizens, to which he responded with the hashtag #KuyaKimTriva.

Alam niyo ba na ang utot ay 방귀 (bang gwi) sa [Korean] at mula sa old English word na ‘feortan’ meaning to pass wind. [Iba’t iba] din ang amoy depende sa nakagawiang kainin,” Atienza responded to a netizen who had called him a fart.

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Human foosball: New form of soccer developed for pandemic

PERGAMINO, Argentina  — Soccer-starved Argentines have found a way to play their beloved sport while social distancing, though the rules have been altered and the dazzling end-to-end dashes produced by national legend Diego Maradona are impossible.

Men play soccer at a local club, Play Futbol 5, in Pergamino, Argentina, Wednesday, July 1, 2020. In order to continue playing amid government restrictions to curb the spread of the new coronavirus, the club divided its soccer field into 12 rectangles to mark limited areas for each player, keeping them from making physical contact. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

Dubbed “metegol humano,” or “human foosball,” the system designed for the coronavirus pandemic involves dividing the field with white chalk into 12 rectangles and restricting each player to a defined space.

The ball can be passed across rectangles, and players can dribble inside their areas. The modified game emphasizes passing and shooting over running and fancy footwork. And of course there are no rough tackles.

Members of the Vende Humo FC and Los Mismos de Siempre amateur teams tried the new form of soccer at the Play Fútbol 5 sports complex in the city of Pergamino, about 240 kilometers (149 miles) from the capital of Buenos Aires.

Players concentrated Wednesday on not stepping over the lines as they dribbled and defended. Leaving one’s rectangle incurs a penalty.

They agreed it was great to be playing again after a 100-day drought. Professional soccer is suspended, and players cannot train. For amateurs who usually rent fields for games, it was like breathing again.

“Now I feel free and happy, getting together again with friends and playing soccer,” said Martín Rodríguez, a defender from Vende Humo FC. “If it were up to me, I would do this from Monday to Monday.”

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