Australian basketballers 'in fear' for safety in Philippines brawl

03 July 2018, 11:10 | Kristine Mills

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's global governing body has opened disciplinary hearings against Australia and the Philippines after their World Cup 2019 Asian qualifier descended into chaos with 13 players ejected for brawling during the match.

Thirteen players were ejected - four from Australia, including Maker, and nine from the Philippines.

Australian basketball players feared for their safety after a World Cup qualifier in the Philippines descended into an extraordinary mass brawl, the sport's domestic governing body has said.

The third period saw Australia continue firing from all cylinders, stretching its lead to 31 points, 79-48, with four minutes remaining before a fight broke loose.

In a statement prior to Monday night's match, the Australian team, through Mark Bradtke of the Australian Basketball Federation, said it meant no disrespect and was just looking after the welfare of its players.

Basketball Australia said on social media that all the Boomers team were safe and well after the incident.

"What we don't accept is the action whereby fans and officials actually get involved in the fray", he said.

A recent FIBA basketball game between Australia and the Philippines has made waves due to the breakout of what has been called "the biggest basketball brawl since the Malice at the Palace".

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However, Moore confirmed the Boomers may have unwittingly riled the hosts by tearing up advertising boards that players had slipped on the day before the game.

While the Australian bench were held back, their Filipino counterparts emptied on to the floor to take part in the ensuing melee, leaving the Boomer players significantly outnumbered.

"That is something that we absolutely don't believe occurred and that will come out as part of the tribunal process that FIBA undertake", he said.

The game was halted for several minutes as referees reviewed the brawl in an OB van outside the stadium to avoid biases.

He said the incident has elevated their awareness of security for the team as they play worldwide games in the future. "The decisions will be communicated in the coming days", FIBA tweeted.

Scheduled post-match press conferences for both teams were cancelled.

This was Maker's second game with the national team.



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