The out-of-control FIBA brawl between Gilas Pilipinas and Boomers stunned the basketball community across the globe
Photo by Tristan Tamayo
The Australian Boomers won by default against Gilas Pilipinas after a huge bench-clearing brawl broke out in the third quarter—perhaps the most embarrassing scene in Philippine basketball history—yesterday night in their FIBA Asia Basketball World Cup Qualifiers showdown.
The shocking incident garnered thousands of reactions not just from locals but also from some NBA players. This puts Philippine basketball’s name under the limelight but not for the most pleasant of reasons.
Here are some of the notable Twitter reactions we’ve seen:
While most of the locals condemned the lack of sportsmanship shown by Gilas, some players and coaching staff took to Twitter to say their piece and apologize for the absurd behavior they displayed.
Jayson Castro was one of the few players who expressed his apologies on Twitter after playing a role in the fist fight. Castro was seen throwing a punch on Daniel Kickert who elbowed Gilas guard RR Pogoy—the moment that sparked the ugly brawl. Gabe Norwood, one of only three Gilas players who remained calm, brought out his emotions regarding the incident. Gilas assistant coach Jong Uichico, who was seen throwing a chair at an Aussie player, also apologized for his actions that he said was just an act of protecting his players.
However, Terrence Romeo took out his enraged emotions yesterday night, saying he wasn’t sorry for what happened.
Some NBA players and international reporters also shared their reactions following the vicious tussle.
The players who took part in the brawl have also released their statements. Australian center Thon Maker, for instance, broke his silence and expressed that he takes full responsibility for his actions at the Philippine Arena.
The chief executive of Basketball Australia Anthony Moore has also released the following statement on the team’s official website:
“Basketball Australia deeply regrets the incident in tonight’s match between the Boomers and the Philippines in Manila. We are extremely disappointed with what happened and our role in it. This is not the spirit in which sport should be played and certainly not in the spirit in which we aim to play basketball. We apologise to our fans and will await the penalties to be handed down.”