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Siquijor Mystics coach, player embroiled in controversy before

(The Freeman) - April 18, 2021 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  The head coach and a player of the Siquijor Mystics that were expelled from the inaugural Pilipinas Vismin Super Cup season have been embroiled in controversies before in separate leagues.

The entire Siquijor squad has been banished from the fledgling Super Cup after it was concluded that they deliberately threw their game away against the ARQ Builders Lapu-Lapu City Heroes last Wednesday at the league’s bubble play in Alcantara town southwest of Cebu.

Siquijor coach Joel Palapal was the one who called the shots when the Hyperwash Vipers was blown out by a staggering 63 points by the BRT Sumisip-St. Clare Saints, 180-117, in the 2019 PBA D-League Foundation Cup that was marred by a string of dubious results.

  On the other hand, Joshua Alcober, one of the Siquijor cagers that were banned for life in the Vismin Super Cup, is among the 17 persons implicated in multiple counts of match-fixing charges during the Soccsksargen Marlins’ highly controversial stint in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League wherein they lost 18 straight games to start the 2019 MPBL Lakan season.

As per Spin.ph and ABS-CBN News reports, the Department of Justice, acting on the complaint lodged by MPBL founder Sen. Manny Pacquiao, has already recommended the filing of criminal cases against all the individuals involved in the MPBL game-fixing and point-shaving scandal last Friday.

Meanwhile, Vismin Super Cup Chief Operating Officer Rocky Chan defended his decision of not imposing a total ban on the ARQ Lapu-Lapu Heroes.

Speaking on ‘Sports Icon PH’ show on YouTube, Chan said they determined after a thorough investigation

that what the Heroes did was in a fit of anger and out frustration against the Mystics for showing a blatant disrespect of the game that is closest to the hearts of the Filipinos.

Still, Chan admitted that what the Heroes did was wrong and unbecoming to the image of professional basketball. He hopes though that lessons will be learned out of the regrettable incident.

“On the side of ARQ, they are very remorseful of what they did. An action that nadala sila sa emosyon nila, frustration sa pinakita ng kalaban nila. Ang mali lang na ginawa nila is sinabayan nila. Alam nila na mali yung ginawa ng kalaban nila, sinabayan nila ng isang mali in which sila tuloy ang nasa limelight of what they did,” Chan explained.

ARQ Lapu-Lapu team owner Jason Arquisola and player Rendell Senining, who was suspended for the rest of the conference for his role in the farcical game, have since apologized for the team’s actions saying that they could have dealt with the matter better. — EBV

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