Australians bruised battered after wild basketball brawl, Thon Maker acknowledges part

Andray Blatche of Gilas Pilipinas blocks a shot by Cheng-ju Lu of Chinese Taipei. Gilas won 93-71

Andray Blatche of Gilas Pilipinas blocks a shot by Cheng-ju Lu of Chinese Taipei. Gilas won 93-71

Basketball Australia CEO Anthony Moore has revealed Boomers players and coaches were in fear for their physical safety after a wild brawl erupted against the Philippines in a FIBA World Cup Asian qualifier on Monday night.

Ejected from the game on the Gilas side were Talisay City-native Pogoy, naturalised player Andray Blatche, Terrence Romeo, Jayson Castro, Carl Bryan Cruz, Calvin Abueva, Troy Rosario, Japeth Aguilar, and Matthew Wright.

When the game resumed, Gilas only fielded three players - June Mar Fajardo, Gabe Norwood, and Baser Amer. Norwood and Fajardo soon fouled out, leaving Amer as the lone Philippine player on the court which forced the officials to call the game with Australia winning 89-53.

"It started when Australia's Daniel Kickert fouled Filipino guard Roger Pogoy and in response Jayson Castro threw a punch and former National Basketball Association journeyman Andray Blatche shoved an Australian player", according to Scooby Jaxson of Sports Illustrated.

Goulding's teammate Daniel Kickert retaliated to prompt a free-for-all with the crowd getting involved.

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) came up with a statement Tuesday afternoon, hours after its Australian counterpart Basketball Australia held a press conference in Brisbane to shed light on the fight that occurred with 4:01 left in the third quarter of the final first round match of the qualifiers.

However, it was an incident involving Australia's team in the build-up to the match, that could explain some of the pent-up anger between the teams.

FIBA later announced that it had opened disciplinary proceedings against both teams, saying "the decision (s) will be communicated in the coming days".

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Manny V. Pangilinan, a Filipino businessman and former president of the SBP who sits on FIBA's Central Board, posted footage of the incident on Sunday. "We will not back down", he tweeted.

Gilas coach Chot Reyes after the game defended his players.

"I am deeply disappointed in the actions displayed during yesterday's game against the Philippines", Maker said. "We ripped the decals up", he said.

While the home team's bench cleared, Australia's bench players were restrained from doing likewise, which Moore said was to avoid automatic ejections. "It's absolutely unacceptable", Reyes said.

As FIBA officials took stock and deliberated over whether the game should continue, several Filipino players gathered to take a group selfie.

But the players from the Philipines seemed pretty pleased with themselves for what had transpired.

"You've been in a major altercation and then to be seemingly enjoying the moment, I found that very odd, " he was quoted as saying by The Courier Mail.