Expect a fierce duel as Armed Forces of the Philippines and newcomer Department of Environment and Natural Resources start their best-of-three title series Sunday in the 8th UNTV Cup at Paco Arena in Manila.
Match is set at 5:30 p.m. with the AFP Cavaliers hoping to become the first back-to-back champion in the annual event designed for public servants.
Though the Cavaliers are already proud owners of three titles, no team has ever won two straight championship and to accomplish the feat will be the biggest challenge for the defending champions.
For one, the DENR Warriors are looking to win the title during their maiden stint in the event organized by UNTV through its president and CEO Dr. Daniel Razon.
Razon said the chosen charity of the champion team will receive a tax-free P4 million top prize while the foundation selected by the runner-up will get P2 million. The charities of the third and fourth placers will get P1 million and P500,000 prizes, respectively.
The league, meanwhile, will launch its 3×3 tournament starting at 3 p.m.in support of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas which is trying to popularize the event which will be played in the Tokyo Games.
AFP and DENR, which finished 1-2 in the two-stage elims, arranged a projected title series after sweeping Judiciary and National Housing Authority in their respective best-of-three series.
NHA and Judiciary clash at 3 p.m. for third place.
The Cavaliers have beaten the Warriors in the elims but veteran players like Eugene Tan and Boyet Bautista are taking no chances since their rivals have what it takes to pull off a surprise.