PVL: Akari makes debut vs Cignal in opener; Creamline begins grand slam bid
MANILA, Philippines — Akari makes its debut against Cignal on Saturday at Sta. Rosa City Sports Complex to kick off the return of the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference, which features a best-of-five Finals series for the first time.
The Power Chargers, the ninth and newest PVL team, are facing the back-to-back bronze medalists HD Spikers at 5:30 p.m.
PLDT and United Auctioneers-Army, meanwhile, raise the curtains at 2:30 p.m. as the import-flavored tournament comes back after three years.
Akari pins its hopes on Dominican Republic import Prisilla Rivera in its first pro game against Cignal, led by Tai Bierria.
The Lady Troopers, on the other hand, are boasting a new team sponsor and reinforcement, Laura Condotta when they face the towering High Speed Hitters, bannered by Elena Savkina.
Meanwhile, F2 Logistics, which missed the previous conference, returns to action on October 11 against Chery Tiggo at PhilSports Arena at 2:30 p.m., followed by defending champion Petro Gazz ‘s duel against Choco Mucho at 5:30 p.m.
The Cargo Movers are bringing back Kalei Mau and American import Lindsay Stalzer as they face Chery Tiggo’s Jelena Cvijovic.
The Angels, who ruled the last Reinforced Conference in 2019, are parading Canadian Lindsey Vander Weide opening their title-retention bid against the Flying Titans, led by Odina Aliyeva.
Creamline, the winner of the first two conferences, begins its grand slam bid against PLDT on Thursday at the same venue in Pasig City with import Yeliz Basa teaming up with Alyssa Valdez, Tots Carlos, and Jema Galanza.
F2 Logistics and Choco Mucho will clash in an early marquee match after the Creamline-PLDT game.
The top four teams after the single-round eliminations on November 19 will advance to the semifinals round, which will be played in another single round-robin format.
In case there will be a tie in the standings, there will be no playoffs as the FIVB classification system will serve as a tiebreaker.
The top two teams of the semis round will clash in a best-of-five finals series for the first time in league history as PVL Commissioner Tonyboy Liao said their clubs want a longer series, while the third and fourth seed will fight in a best-of-three bronze series.
The league will stage in four venues, including Mall of Asia Arena and Ynares Center in Antipolo.
Creamline and Petro Gazz will renew their rivalry on October 18 at PhilSports Arena.
The much-anticipated duel of Mau and Valdez will take place on November 5 as F2 Logistics and Creamline clash for the first time. But the PVL has yet to announce the venue.
Sister teams Choco Mucho and Creamline battle anew on November 17 at MOA Arena.