Why the PVL Open is now called the All-Filipino Conference
MANILA, Philippines — The Premier Volleyball League kicks off its 2023 season with the brand new All-Filipino Conference formerly known as the Open Conference.
After using the Open Conference as the name for its Filipino players-exclusive tournament in the past six years, Sports Vision, the league organizer, decided to rebrand it as the All-Filipino Conference starting this 2023.
“The reason why we changed the title of the Conference to All Filipino is because ‘only Filipinos’ and ‘Fil-Foreigners’ are allowed to participate in this Conference,” PVL tournament director Tonyboy Liao told Inquirer Sports.
“If it’s called Open, it’s like other nationalities can play. To make it clearer, we named it to [All-Filipino] Conference,” he added.
Open Conference history
Sports Vision was the group that founded Shakey’s V-League — PVL’s predecessor — in 2004, becoming an avenue for college women’s volleyball teams. The league was calling its tournaments 1st and 2nd Conferences back then.
But during the eighth season, the V-League debuted the Open Conference in 2011 with military and club teams joining the tournament. Since then, the league had more club teams, paving way for the import-laden Reinforced Conference, which was inaugurated in 2014 in the 11th season.
After 13 seasons, the V-League was rebranded as the PVL in 2017 and debuted as a professional league in 2021. All the top club teams in the country joined the tournament with Chery Tiggo becoming the first pro champion in the Open Conference inside the Ilocos Norte bubble.
Although the PVL’s 1st Conference will be now known as the All-Filipino Conference, the Sports Vision is still using the Open Conference for Spikers’ Turf, which begins its 2023 season on Sunday.
The All-Filipino Conference, which opens on February 4, will have a different tournament format this season with the nine clubs namely Creamline, Petro Gazz, Cignal, Choco Mucho, PLDT, F2 Logistics, Chery Tiggo, Akari, and Army clashing in a single round robin with the top four teams advancing to the semifinal round.
Just like in the Reinforced Conference, the remaining four squads will play another round robin with the top two teams setting up a best-of-three Finals series, while the third and fourth seeds clash in a separate series for the bronze.
In the 2022 Open Conference, nine squads were separated into two groups with the top four squads of each bracket clashing in crossover quarterfinals to determine the semifinalists. Creamline swept all of its eight games to rule the season-opening tournament last year.
After the All-Filipino Conference, the PVL will stage the second edition of the Invitationals in June and will end the season with the import-laden Reinforced Conference in October.