Japan, Vietnam guest teams to join PVL Invitationals in semifinals | Inquirer Sports

Japan, Vietnam guest teams to join PVL Invitationals in semifinals

/ 03:36 PM July 06, 2023

PVL Invitational 2023 guest teams Kurashiki Ablaze Kinh Bac-Bac Ninh

Guest teams that are joining the PVL Invitational 2023 semifinals.

MANILA, Philippines — Japanese squad Kurashiki Ablaze and Vietnam’s Kinh Bac-Bac Ninh will join the semifinal round of the 2023 Premier Volleyball League Invitational Conference.

The league on Thursday unveiled the two guest teams that will spice up the competition in the semifinal round-robin starting on July 20.


Japan V. League Division 3 Kurashiki Ablaze and Vietnam League’s Kinh Bac-Bac Ninh will battle the top four local teams of the midseason tournament.


The Kurashiki Ablaze, which is based in Yokohama, is expected to parade Saya Taniguchi, Sayaka Tanida, Yukino Yano Saki Tanabe, Asaka Tamaru, Reina Fujiwara and Honoka Okuda.

The Japanese club topped the 13th National Six-Man Volleyball League, Western tournament, placed second in the 12th National Volleyball League, and finished third in the 13th National Volleyball League Grand Champion Match.

The Vietnamese team, on the other hand, earned the right to compete in Vietnam’s National Championship in 2018 and earned the bronze in the next two years.

The top two teams of the semifinal will clash in a winner-take-all Final on July 30 at Philsports Arena, while the third and fourth-ranked squads battle for bronze on the same day.

Only the top two teams from each group of the ongoing Pool Phase will join the two guest teams for another round-robin in the semis with the defending champion Creamline leading Pool A with a 2-0 record, followed by PLDT after winning its first assignment against Akari last week.

F2 Logistics and Choco Mucho share the 2-0 lead in Pool B ahead of Cignal and Petro Gazz, who hold identical 1-1 records.


KingWhale Taipei was last season’s lone guest team and settled for silver after losing to the Cool Smashers in the winner-take-all Final.

Japan’s Kobe Shinwa University was supposed to be the other guest team but suddenly begged off from joining the tournament after some of its members tested positive for COVID-19. The league invited the Philippine women’s volleyball team, composed of the National University core, as part of its build-up for last year’s AVC Cup. But the players also refused to join that led to their removal from the program.

Meanwhile, the league returns with an explosive quadruple-header on Tuesday after a 10-day break for the country’s hosting of the Volleyball Nations League.

Petro Gazz and the winless Farm Fresh (0-2) kick off the busy day at 9:30 a.m., followed by another Pool B match between Cignal and Foton (0-2) at 12 noon.

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Akari and Chery Tiggo, which lost their Pool A campaign openers, clash for their first win at 4 p.m., followed by the battle for the Pool B lead between Choco Mucho and F2 Logistics at 6:30 p.m.


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