By Jelly F. Musico
MANILA, March 25 (PNA) — A total of 120 teams will slug it out in the Little League Philippine Series scheduled April 20 to 27 in 13 different venues in Marikina City.
Jolly Gomez, PSC commissioner and Little League district administrator, said the event will be held in commemoration of the 75th year of the Little League International.
“This will be a very big event for all the teams from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao,” said Gomez during Tuesday’s Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum at Shakey’s Malate.
The PSC commissioner was joined in the weekly sports forum presented by Shakey’s, Accel, and Pagcor by Little League deputy district administrator Chito Gonzalez and Marikina sports coordinator Warren Sira.
Gonzalez said in baseball, there will be 14 teams in the under-14 juniors, 13 teams in the Senior League 16-under, and 12 teams in the Big League 18-under. In softball, reserved only for female players, 18 teams will vie in the Little League, 11 teams in the Junior League, nine in the Senior League, and two in the Big League.
Gonzalez said it is a toss-up among the competing teams in the different divisions.
“You can never tell. Before it always used to be Bacolod winning the title, but now we have strong teams from Northern Samar, Cebu, and Zamboanga,” he said.
Sira, representing Marikina Mayor Del de Guzman, said the Marikina Sports Center will be the main venue while nearby schools with playable fields will also host the games. There is one back-up venue in Pasig City.
Gomez is elated with the huge number of competing teams because when the Philippine Series started 15 years ago only 40 teams competed.
The winners in the Philippine Series will earn rights to represent the country in the Asia-Pacific Regional Championships in Clark in Pampanga on the first week of July.
Gomez said a total of 17 countries represented by 54 teams will see action in the Asia-Pacific regionals. (PNA)