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Freeman Cebu Sports

17th Aboitiz Cup draws record number of entries

Caecent No-ot Magsumbol - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines -  The Aboitiz Cup, Cebu's breeding ground of football talents, has attracted a record-field of 194 teams as its 17th edition unfolds late afternoon this Sunday at the Cebu City Sports Center.

"This tournament, which is running on its 17th year, has brought the best of Cebu as the level and intensity of competition has been a primary means by which coaches and players alike excel, are recognized, scouted, and chosen to represent Cebu in national and international competitions," said Cebu Football Association (CFA) president Ricky Dakay during the formal launching of the event yesterday at Casino Español de Cebu.

Though already a record, the number of entries are expected to increase as organizers have set the deadling for registration today.

Last year, the annual tournament drew a total of 158 teams spread in 15 different categories that include the under 11, under 7, under 9, under 15, under 18, under 23, inter-BPO, 38-above and the ladies and men's open.

"There are even teams that we had to turn down. But we still have to evaluate the rest who still want to join. We cannot accommodate everybody since we have a schedule to follow," said CFA tournament committee chairman Glenn Quisido.

With the Aboitiz Sports Field in Subangdaku, Mandaue City no longer available for use in the latest edition, CFA has identified four venues of the four-month long tournament. Aside from the CSSC, games will also be played at the Don Bosco Technological Center, Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu and San Roque Parish football fields.

On the other hand, Dakay is so grateful that the Aboitiz Group of Companies, despite the ugly 'free-for-all' incident between Alcoy FC and SHS-Ateneo that somehow dealt a major blackeye to Cebu football, has continued to support CFA and this endeavor that is a big boost to its grassroots sports development program.

"We are most grateful to the Aboitiz Foundation that despite what had happened last year, they pressed on and prevailed upon. Thus, their continued support with the hope that these experiences are important opportunities for reflection, learning and improvement," Dakay said.

Dakay is hopeful that the Cebu football community has learned from it and that this year's edition will serve as a gauge on how far the local players and their supporters have developed.

"Our executive vice president and chief operating officer Sonny Carpio said 'Aboitiz continues to support sports development in Cebu with the hope of instilling the values of teamwork, discipline and sportsmanship among the youth.' And this also promotes the value of education through sports," said Aboitiz Foundation AVP for Operations Danny Cerence. (FREEMAN)

ABOITIZ CUP

ABOITIZ FOUNDATION

ABOITIZ GROUP OF COMPANIES

CASINO ESPA

CEBU

CEBU AND SAN ROQUE PARISH

CEBU CITY SPORTS CENTER

CEBU FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION

DAKAY

DON BOSCO TECHNOLOGICAL CENTER

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