MVP calls FIBA verdict 'nonsensical'

By Nelson Beltran, The Philippine Star

Posted at Sep 21 2012 02:33 PM | Updated as of Sep 21 2012 10:33 PM

TOKYO – SBP president Manny V. Pangilinan said they would reconsider FIBA Asia’s executive board’s offer to have the Philippines as alternative site in the event Lebanon would beg off from hosting the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship.

Calling the decision “nonsensical,” Pangilinan expressed disappointment that the merits and demerits of competing proposals were not considered and weighed during the deliberations for the hosting rights.

And with the Philippines literally being made a spare tire, Pangilinan said they would reconsider their position if not given ample time to prepare for the FIBA World Cup qualifier.

The FIBA Asia Executive Board on Wednesday awarded to Lebanon the hosting rights for the next Asian meet that serves as the regional qualifier for the 2014 FIBA World Cup.

FIBA Asia secretary general Hagop Khajirian, a Lebanese, said it’s Lebanon but it goes to the Philippines if Lebanon can’t make it.

Lebanon also won the bidding war for the 2011 championship that it later yielded and consequently went to Wuhan, China.

“The decision as we’re told does not make any sense at all. If FIBA Asia thought Lebanon were capable of hosting, then so be it. Why are we made a bridesmaid a spare part, the fifth wheel? It certainly gives the impression that FIBA wasn’t at all sure about Lebanon’s preparedness as opposed to ours – and suggests shades of partiality,” said Pangilinan.

“I believe the Philippines should reconsider its position on this nonsensical decision or, in the alternative, advise FIBA that by such and such a date – sooner rather than later – if no advise is given us, considering as well the months of preparations required for proper hosting, we will simply decline,” Pangilinan added.

Pangilinan sent this message to FIBA world secretary general Patrick Bauhmann who attended the conference together with FIBA world president Yvan Mainini.

“In our country, we’re trying our very best to make the supreme effort to minimize the intrusion of politics into sport,” Pangilinan also said in the message.