Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) has issued an apology for the violence witnessed by basketball fans between members of the Philippine national team Gilas Pilipinas and the Australian Boomers at the FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers yesterday, July 2.
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SMB President Alfred Panlilio shared the statement on his official Twitter account today, July 3.
"The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) apologizes to Filipino basketball fans and to the basketball community for the incident that occurred during last night's game. As hosts, we regret having breached the bounds of traditional Filipino hospitality. As the national team representing flag and country, we likewise extend our apologies to the Filipino people.
SMB stands by its conviction that violence has no place in sports.
"We will review the incident comprehensively and await the decision of FIBA with respect to disciplinary proceedings on the matter," they added.
In an interview with The Philippine Daily Inquirer, Gilas coach Chot Reyes claimed that Boomers center Daniel Kickert had been "striking" his players during warmups, and a brawl erupted in the third quarter of the game when the Aussie elbowed Gilas guard Roger Pogoy in the face.
Both teams are facing disciplinary proceedings from FIBA, and are awaiting judgment. According to reports, players involved might be subjected to international suspension.
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