The ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) Board have met and announces today that the ABL Season 2019/2020 will be deemed concluded as there is no safe way to complete the remaining fixtures. This year would have been a milestone year for the ABL, as we tipped-off into our tenth (10th) year. This decision is not an easy one and has not been made lightly. The overriding factor of our social responsibility, health and the well-being of all our stakeholders was at the forefront of the discussion. At all times, the ABL Board have been conscious of our charter, to provide a high-level regional basketball competition platform for teams to compete and athletes to showcase their skills, while entertaining fans in a safe and enjoyable manner.
During the initial stage of the COVID-19, the league took its first step by suspending all fixtures as of 13th March 2020. The league continued to explore a number of possible options to complete the 2019/20 season, even with a shortened season in mind. As the COVID-19 turned into a pandemic, the nature of the league’s operation and fixtures have been severely impacted by the closure of borders and activities in order to contain the virus. With that in mind, the league recognizes that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to present significant challenges to our operation and safety of everyone, thus rendering completion of the league improbable. The league would be categorized as incomplete due to the nature of the league’s format with a playoff system, it would be impossible to determine a rightful champion.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all our clubs, valued commercial partners and our fans for your support and understanding across the last four months of uncertainty. Our sincere gratitude to all of our stakeholders who have been with us throughout. We are ever so grateful for the amazing support the league has had for the past ten (10) years!
We will now turn our efforts into planning for the next ASEAN Basketball League season in 2021 and hope to make announcements on the 11th ABL Season after completing consultations among the teams. We are determined to find a way forward and return to the courts bigger and better alongside all our teams, commercial partners and fans. In the meantime, we implore everyone to stay safe, healthy and strong as we move forward together!
BOARD OF THE ASEAN BASKETBALL LEAGUE
15 JULY 2020