Australia, Gilas engage in free-for-all in crucial WCQ match

All hell broke loose. Nikki Collantes
By Ivan Saldajeno

BOCAUE--With the top spot in Group B of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers on the line, the clash between Gilas Pilipinas and Australia was expected to be a big time clash.

But on Monday night, things went awful.

A bench-clearing brawl ensued between the two teams in the third quarter of their showdown at the Philippine Arena.

With 4:01 remaining in the third quarter and Australia ahead, 79-48, RR Pogoy shoved Chris Goulding while trying to find a space.

Daniel Kickert retaliated with his own shove against Pogoy, and the melee sparked.

In the end, Goulding, Kickert, Thon Maker, and Nathan Sobey were thrown out for Australia.

However, Pogoy, Jayson Castro, Terrence Romeo, Calvin Abueva, Troy Rosario, Japeth Aguilar, Andray Blatche, Carl Cruz, and Matt Wright were also thrown out, leaving only Junemar Fajardo, Baser Amer, and Gabe Norwood eligible to continue.

Fajardo and Norwood, who are already in foul trouble during that time, gave up their remaining fouls to finally put an end to the game.

The game was called at the 1:57 mark of the third with Australia winning, 89-53.

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