MANILA, Philippines – Gilas Pilipinas deputy coach Jong Uichico apologized for his involvement in the bench-emptying melee that marred the Philippines' game against Australia in the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asia Qualifiers on Monday, July 2.
Uichico took to Twitter to explain his side for participating in the brawl, saying his emotions got the best of him "like a father who cares about his sons."
The 9-time PBA champion was seen delivering continuous blows on Aussie Christopher Goulding, who was already getting a beating from Gilas pool player Allein Maliksi.
As the skirmish transpired, Uichico left the Philippines' bench before joining Maliksi in pummeling Goulding. (READ: Chot Reyes defends Gilas' actions in brawl with Australia)
"Tonight, my emotions got the better of me like a father who cares about his sons. That does not excuse my actions and I apologize to everyone as in hindsight I should have not gotten involved. This is a painful but maybe necessary lesson for me," he wrote.
Tonight, my emotions got the better of me like a father who cares about his sons. That does not excuse my actions and I apologize to everyone as in hindsight I should have not gotten involved. This is a painful but maybe necessary lesson for me. — Jong Uichico (@coachjong) July 2, 2018
A total of 13 players were ejected in a game that saw Australia win by default as Gilas had only one player left.
Nine Filipinos were tossed out, leaving June Mar Fajardo, Gabe Norwood and Baser Amer to play 3-vs-5 against the Aussies.
The game was stopped with two minutes left in the 3rd quarter with Fajardo and Norwood fouling out as FIBA rules state that at least two players should be inside the court for play to continue.
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.