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Sunday, 8 July 2018

BRAWL during FIBA World Cup Qualifier Philippines vs Australia and 5 vs 3 aftermath







Brawl Mars FIBA Qualifier Between the Philippines and Australia
ImageMatthew Wright of the Philippines threw a punch at Australia’s Daniel Kickert during a brawl that broke out in their FIBA World Cup qualifier game on Monday.CreditTed Aljibe/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images


By Benjamin Hoffman
July 2, 2018
It was not quite “The Malice at the Palace,” but a brawl at a FIBA World Cup qualifier game on Monday was one of the crazier scenes in recent basketball history, with haymaker punches and folding chairs thrown, wild kicks attempted, and 13 players eventually being ejected.

Unlike the “Malice” game — the infamous fight in 2004 involving the Indiana Pacers and the Detroit Pistons — there was no apparent violence directed at fans, but there were several N.B.A. players mixed up in the brawl during a 2019 FIBA World Cup qualifier between Australia and the Philippines. Thon Maker of the Milwaukee Bucks and Andray Blatche, formerly of the Nets, were among the ejected players, and the Bucks’ Matthew Dellavedova was playing for Australia.







Australia vs the Philippines ended in absolute CHAOS.... and 13 ejections!




The events unfolded at the Philippine Arena in Santa Maria in front of a crowd estimated at more than 22,000 people. The game was already a blowout in Australia’s favor when, with about four minutes remaining in the third quarter, Roger Pogoy of the Philippines collided with Australia’s Christopher Goulding. Apparently unsatisfied with the message he sent with his first elbow, Pogoy sought out contact again, knocking Goulding to the ground.

Australia’s Daniel Kickert then stepped in, shoving Pogoy down, at which point chaos ensued.

Maker, whose family left Sudan when he was 5 and who now plays for Australia, was punched in the back of the head and, in response, wildly kicked at two different players, leading to his ejection. Blatche, who plays for the Philippines, earned his by throwing a walloping punch at Australia’s Nathan Sobey.

Blatche, a naturalized citizen of the Philippines who has been out of the N.B.A. since 2014, took to Twitter Monday afternoon to try to explain himself


A few hour later, Maker issued a statement expressing deep disappointment over what happened. He cited his having grown up in a war-torn country, and said he tried to carry himself in a way that promotes peace and unity. But in his apology he appeared to lay some blame on the organizers of the event.

“My hope is that this experience provides a springboard for discussion regarding the security surrounding these games,” said Maker, a rising star for the Bucks. “I take responsibility for my actions knowing that they were a result of my desire to protect my teammates and myself.”


After all the ejections, the Philippines was left with just three eligible players, and after two of them fouled out, the game was called in Australia’s favor: 89-53.

FIBA, which has worked hard in recent years to build interest in their World Cup games — both in the five-on-five and three-on-three formats — issued a statement about the brawl.

“Following the incident that occurred in the third quarter of the Philippines-Australia game on Monday in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Asian Qualifiers, FIBA will now open disciplinary proceedings against both teams. The decision(s) will be communicated in the coming days.”

ImageAustralia's Thon Maker, center, twice went airborne to try to deliver kicks during the fracas.CreditBullit Marquez/Associated Press


Anthony Moore, the chief executive of Basketball Australia, also issued a statement, saying: “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 apologize to our fans and will await the penalties to be handed down.”

In contrast, Chot Reyes, the coach of the Filipino team, defended his players’ conduct.

“I understand the disappointment,” he told reporters after the game. “I understand that some are embarrassed, but you don’t know what happened. You have to be in the team. You have to be in our circle to really understand what went down.”

The top seven Asian teams in qualifying will advance to the 2019 World Cup in China. With the win, tenth-ranked Australia improved to 5-1, which ties them for the best record thus far. The Philippines, ranked 30th, dropped to 4-2 and while still in position to qualify, are a bit closer to the pack.

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