Limpag: City vs. Province

DAYS after Cebu City Councilor Dondon Hontiveros announced his city ordinance that would push for a sports bubble, the Cebu Province may indirectly have pricked the bubble before it could even form.

Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia said the province would no longer require Covid tests for tourists coming to Cebu, only requiring them to have a medical certificate issued within seven days prior to arrival and a confirmed resort/hotel booking.

What does that have to do with the Cebu City sports bubble? Well, it is those same tourists that just got a red carpet to Cebu Province that is the target of Cebu City’s sports bubble ordinance.

And between going into a bubble in a city where you’d be isolated and be required to take regular tests, and a province where requirements have been loosened, which do you think the sports organizers would choose?

Alcantara won the VisMin Cup sweepstakes over Cebu City, when the Queen City’s Covid numbers were rising. That was before Governor Garcia announced the loosening of requirements for tourists, making it easy for them to come here.

I think future sweepstakes will tilt heavily in the Province’s favor because of this. Unless, of course, Cebu City will aggressively go after pro sports leagues to have their bubbles held in the city.

Despite that, I hope Cebu City can still have its own sports bubbles. It would be a boost to the sports tourism industry that hasn’t seen an event since the games were cancelled exactly 12 months ago.

And now that Cebu Province has loosened requirements, will sports leagues also consider holding their events here? Beach volleyball is looking at Subic and we all know that Cebu Province is famous for its beaches, right?

Perhaps, Bantayan can invite the beach volleyball organizers to hold their event on their beaches again. Before the pandemic, it hosted beach volleyball events participated by the country’s best regularly. Aside from Bantayan, tourist towns like Moalboal could also be considered a venue.

Of course, that goes without saying, despite the loosening of requirements, that health protocols should be observed. We wouldn’t want these sports events to be super spreaders, right?