Philippines ready to host, compete in FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship

FROM LEFT is Roberto Alabado III director Office of Film and Sports Tourism Dot, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano chairperson Local Organizing Committee,   Ramon Suzara PNVF president and Jane Basas president and chief executive officer (CEO) Cignal TV, during the press conference of the Volleyball Men’s World Championship at Marquis events place in Taguig City. — PHILIPPINE STAR/RUSSELL PALM

THE Philippines assured to leave no stone unturned in the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) Volleyball Men’s World Championships 2025 — in terms of hosting for the first time ever and competing anew after 50 long years.

In an official press conference yesterday for the hosting launch with more than a year to go, the country brims with confidence that it can serve as the warmest home to the visitors and at the same time fly the flag high in front of Filipino fans. “I am ready. We are ready. The team is ready. The Philippines is ready to face the challenges and fulfill a dream as our hearts beat collectively to serve the sport,” vowed Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) President Ramon “Tats” Suzara in the massive gathering of volleyball officials, coaches, players and stakeholders at the Bonifacio Global City in Taguig.

“If you love volleyball, then you will surely love the Philippines. We will make them feel at home right at our own home.”

The FIVB in Switzerland last week welcomed the Philippine delegation to formally award the hosting rights of the world joust slated Sept. 12 to 28 to a single country for the first time in a decade since Poland staged the event in 2014.

As host, the country gained an automatic slot to snap a five decade-drought since its last participation in the 1974 edition in Mexico, to complete the stacked 32-team cast led by reigning world champion Italy and world No. 1 Poland, which also won the Volleyball Nations League 2023. Senator Alan Cayetano, who’s also the chairman emeritus of the PNVF, will chair the Local Organizing Committee (LOC), similar to his post in the hosting success of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.

“It’s how we, as a people, welcome the rest of the world. I believe that our hope for a successful hosting will be by faith and action — faith in God and action as a community. I believe that it’s time for the world volleyball to see a united volleyball community in the Pilipinas,” said Mr. Cayetano, joined by Department of Tourism Office of Film and Sports Tourism Director Robert Alabado III and Cignal TV President and CEO Jane Basas.

The PNVF will also host the official draw in September to mark a year-long countdown and formally start the training camp of the Philippine men’s national team under the watch of Brazilian mentor Sergio Veloso.

World-class Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay and the Smart-Araneta Coliseum will serve as the playing venues as the Philippines becomes home to yet another world championships after hosting the FIBA Basketball World Cup last year.

Like Gilas Pilipinas, the Filipino spikers will have an official moniker for the world joust set to be announced soon by the PNVF that has also sealed team partnership with PLDT and Cignal led by sports patron Manny V. Pangilinan.

Cignal will serve as the host broadcaster with a promise to showcase the best of volleyball here and abroad through multiple TV and online platforms. — John Bryan Ulanday