Fans divided over Gilas-Australia brawl
There’s nothing like a Gilas Pilipinas game to unite a country over the mutual love for basketball.
Turns out, there’s also nothing like a controversy to drive a wedge between the national team supporters.
Fans are divided on social media over the stunning brawl that broke out between Philippines and Australia in the Fiba World Cup Asian Qualifiers Monday night.
On one hand, with the Australians reportedly taunting the Filipinos as early as the warm-up until Daniel Kickert’s shove on Roger Pogoy triggered the melee in the third quarter, some fans feel like Gilas Pilipinas had every right to push back.
Things had been heated between the nations leading up to the game, with Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas chairman emeritus Manny V. Pangilinan blasting the Australians for removing Fiba-approved decals from the court without permission.
Even if your opponents are bigger, stronger, better equipped, if they are bullying you in in your own land you have to fight back. https://t.co/qUZJAn7eLL
— Crotch🏐43🏐Rocket (@Bo_ams) July 3, 2018
Honestly, like why would you even blame it on Gilas? They just defended theirselves. We won’t just let you beat the shit out of us. Maybe they thought we wouldn’t fight back. You’re wrong tho. And besides, home court namin ito. Baka lang naman makakalimutan niyo. #FIBAWC
— Quellcrist (@rhianxxi) July 2, 2018ADVERTISEMENT
Stop shaming the Gilas players. The Aussies are dirty players and they instigated this. It’s just normal for us to fight back, in a way they pushed us to do so. They removed the court decals yesterday and now this. It’s time to throw away that lame Pinoy hospitality! #FIBAWC
— Justine Dizon (@justinedizon) July 2, 2018
Not a world cup fan but seeing Gilas and Australia doing royal rumble is kinda fun😂😂. Sorry Aus. Dont be little us Filipinos. Yeah. The game is kinda mess up but seeing how Gilas players defended there teammates was just epic. We dont turn our back on our colleagues.😊 #FIBAWC pic.twitter.com/wSE5VnfLNu
— Khateryn (@Khateryn4) July 2, 2018
I am more shameful of Filipinos bashing Gilas for their behavior. It's easy to say that they should have not done this and that. I firmly believe that you'll never know 'til you get there. And you'll never know when you don't have that all-in passion for Pinoy Basketball #FIBAWC
— M.A.G.S (@mhugzibugz) July 2, 2018
Gilas is PH, we are PH.
Shame on Gilas? Shame on you.
Once a Filipino always a Filipino! 🇵🇭#FIBAWC
— Ken (@ynigoken) July 2, 2018
👇🏼 The #Boomers was just disrespectful, i know that the #Gilas was being unprofessional ni excuses. but to the Boomers,don’t expect to start a fire and expect not to get burn! Respect and respect will be given. #FIBA #FIBAWC pic.twitter.com/fnCHxDyzTK
— Daniel Martinito (@Dan_martimarts) July 2, 2018
Don’t care if people call me classless, don’t care about sportsmanship, don’t care what other people thinks. If someone hit up my teammate like this. I aint backing down. THREAD FOR GILAS pic.twitter.com/ld1d8NtsAO
— weaki (@weakipedia_) July 2, 2018
My dad told me to not fight unless absolutely necessary. But when the time comes, throw first, throw fast, throw hard, get your friends’ backs.
Also, those who break the rules are trash, but those who abandon their friends are worse than trash. (Kakashi Hatake)
— þórbjørnúlfr (@KuyaL18) July 2, 2018
Even the Gilas players and the coaches themselves said that they were merely looking out for their brothers on the floor.
The Filipinos were getting blown out, 79-48, when the two sides finally came to blows in the bench-clearing incident that saw punches and kicks thrown with the crowd at Philippine Arena also egging them on.
Nine players from Gilas’ side were tossed out of the game while four were ejected from the Australian side.
Naturally, there were others who were displeased with Gilas for what they thought was behavior unbecoming of a national team.
“Embarrassing” quickly became the word of the night to describe the melee, with the crowd at the venue also not helping calm down the nerves.
Im not even talking about what happened inside the court. Kasama talaga yun. Kung mangyayari, mangyayari. It’s the general behavior in the arena and the fact na may nakisali pang fans para pagtulungan yung isang player na nakahiga na tapos masaya pa sila yung nakakalungkot. 😕 https://t.co/Pxx8HCuPlC
— Thirdy (@ThirdyRavenaaa) July 2, 2018
— Professional Heckler (@HecklerForever) July 2, 2018
Parang basketball sa kanto. Dahil tinambakan, dinaan sa sapakan. pic.twitter.com/mdKovj8394
— Professional Heckler (@HecklerForever) July 2, 2018
The stereotypical Filipino macho is a "siga" who performs physical violence to assert his masculinity. The prevalence of this macho culture is the reason why fans are applauding Gilas' brawl. This machismo populism is also the reason why leaders like Duterte is being celebrated.
— Tina (@inaurner) July 2, 2018
Gilas exposed the worst of us: undisciplined, cowardly, pikon, irresponsible. And on the world stage no less. #FIBAWC
— Juan DC (@greenherrings) July 3, 2018
In basketball it happens. Part of the game? Maybe. But however you look at it, it's humiliating and embarrassing. Not to mention, we're the host country. Gilas is one of those teams well respected in basketball & FIBA. We're better than this. Won't help our cause in the long run.
— James Vitaliano (@jamesvitaliano) July 2, 2018
Marc Pingris’ selfie in the middle of the chaos also didn’t sit well with others, but some saw it as a mere gesture to diffuse some tension.
At the end of the day, Gilas did not come to play against Australia. Look at the turnovers and defensive lapses. Down by 31, they engaged on a free for all brawl at their homecourt and took a selfie after.
This is truly an embarassing day for PHL basketball. Shame.
— Mike Saulo (@mikesaulo) July 2, 2018
So after fighting the Australians in a disgraceful brawl, down 31, Gilas takes a team selfie.
— Galvez (@_AngeloGalvez) July 2, 2018
After the shameful brawl and the selfie that Gilas took part in, the country has nothing left to be proud of or to be happy about. Nothing. This country is just hopeless.
— Boy Jetski (@JetskiPaMore) July 2, 2018
Pingris made the team to take a selfie just to calm things down and lighten up the mood. If majority of the Filipinos will straight up blame Gilas, I really now understand why Filipinos protect foreigners so much that they choose them over our kababayans
— Niño Villanueva (@_razelvllnv) July 2, 2018
— Gretchen Ho (@gretchenho) July 2, 2018
If I may offer insight on the selfie, as someone in the audience, players weren’t the only ones agitated, crowd was too. The selfie worked as an ice breaker and lightened the tension. That’s what it seemed like, at least.
— Francesca Litton (@CheckLit) July 2, 2018
Gilas lost to Australia by default, 89-53, after Baser Amer, June Mar Fajardo and Gabe Norwood, the three players who were left on the floor after the incident, fouled out and ended the game.
Get the hottest sports news straight into your inbox
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.