AT LEAST they are talking. There is light at the end of the tunnel of the current leadership crisis of the Philippine Volleyball Federation (PVF) as the two warring factions have recently sat down to name sportsman Edgardo “Boy” Cantada as the association’s new Chairman to replace Pedro Mendoza Jr. who passed away last year.
Also retaining their posts are President Karl Chan and Secretary General Dr. Rustico “Otie” Camangian. Board Member D’ Artagnan Yambao was promoted to Vice President after Chan succeeded former President Gener Dungo in 2013.
However, there will be a PVF General Assembly on January 25, 2015 at a venue to be announced soon wherein a new set of officers shall be elected. Over 40 recognized representatives from the sport’s stakeholders nationwide are expected to attend including commercial leagues Philippine Super Liga and Shakey’s V-League and college leagues NAASCU, NCAA and UAAP plus regional associations.
Another major issue to be tackled at the GA is the future of the Amihan women’s and Bagwis men’s national teams formed by the PVF last year with the backing of PLDT Home Fibr. Both sides are aiming to represent the country in the 28th Southeast Asian Games in Singapore later this year.
Pending resolution of the leadership impasse, the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) intervened by forming its own version of the national teams. The POC retained most of the players but replaced head coaches Ramil de Jesus (women) and Odjie Mamon (men) with multi-titled mentors Roger Gorayeb and Sammy Acaylar respectively.
Aside from the SEA Games stint, the brouhaha has also put the Philippines’ hosting of the First Asian Women’s Under-23 Championship this coming May 1 to 9 in jeopardy. Unless the problem is solved, the tournament could be moved to another country.
Cantada, the brother of the late legendary sportscaster “Smoking” Joe Cantada, has offered his Cantada Sports Center in Taguig City as a future training venue of the national teams. The place has facilities for both indoor and beach volleyball as well as a dormitory.
In the last decade, volleyball has risen from the doldrums to register exponential growth both as a participatory and even more as a spectator sport especially with the women’s game. Both commercial and college leagues enjoy extensive television coverage and corporate sponsorships with fans filling up major arenas for the big games.
The current leadership problem started last November when Cantada was installed as Chairman by a group claiming to be the legitimate PVF Board. Dungo remained as the President on-leave while naming Yambao as Vice President, Coach Dulce Pante as Treasurer and Cantada’s son Gerard as Secretary General.