MANILA, Philippines -- NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao believes there is no reason to panic even after a referee was announced as a suspected positive case of COVID-19 inside the PBA bubble in Clark, Pampanga on Wednesday.
The game official was removed from the PBA bubble on Wednesday morning and is currently quarantined at the Athletes' Village in New Clark City. The league announced Wednesday night that he may be a case of a false positive after returning a negative result from an antigen test.
Guiao said after NLEX's 102-88 rout of NorthPort that the suspected positive case "wasn't really a big issue" for him and his team, in terms of how they coped with the situation.
"Psychologically, I'm really prepared. Alam ko talaga na mahirap talaga i-100%. Something might go wrong," he explained.
"The good thing about this is, when something goes wrong, you're still able to maintain control and you're still able to run it professionally, just like what we're doing," he added.
"So sa akin I'm not really worried, I'm not really in a state of panic or whatever. These people know what they're doing, they can handle the situation."
Guiao, a former vice governor of Pampanga, played a key role in Clark's bid to host the PBA bubble. He expressed his confidence in the officials of the Clark Development Corp., the Bases Conversion Development Authority, and of the PBA in handling the crisis.
It was the CDC that informed the PBA of the positive result, after which they immediately followed the protocols that led to the referee being brought out of the bubble and into the Athletes' Village.
He will stay there for 14 days under strict quarantine.
"There is no 100% guarantee that you can keep the virus out," said Guiao. "Meron talaga eh, kasi mahirap, we really don't know anything - we really don't know all about the virus. Ako nagtataka ako paano nakapasok sa higpit ng mga protocol natin."
"But, so far, I have nothing but praises for how Clark, the BCDA, and the PBA itself have been conducting this tournament. I don't think that's something that should taint how professionally this bubble has been managed," he added.
Games continued on Wednesday night even after the announcement of the suspected positive case, with Guiao's NLEX squad grabbing their first win of the PBA Philippine Cup. The contest between Phoenix Super LPG and Barangay Ginebra is currently ongoing.
For Guiao, this is proof that their protocols are working.
"The mere fact that we're still going strong, the mere fact that right away they were able to act, right away they were able to mitigate the situation, is also a testimony to how well-managed this conference is," said the coach.