CEBU CITY – Controversial coach Gary Cortes is back at the helm of University of the Visayas less than two months after getting suspended indefinitely for his role in the walkout that marred an exhibition game in the town of Medellin.
No less than team manager Gerald Anthony ‘Samsam’ Gullas confirmed to Spin.ph the latest development in the camp of the Green Lancers.
In a statement, Gullas, a representative in the first district of Cebu, said Cortez only acted in the heat of the moment and has since vowed to maintain his composure regardless of the situation.
“On behalf of the University of the Visayas and as team manager of the UV Green Lancers, I would like to announce that Gary Cortes is reinstated as head coach of the UV Green Lancers, thereby lifting the penalty of indefinite suspension that was meted about two months ago for his conduct unbecoming a Visayanian,” Gullas said.
“The suspension order was lifted by UV after finding that coach Gary acted only during the heat of passion and has expressed his sincerest apology to the administration, players, students, and the fans. Coach Gary vowed not to do similar acts in the future and will maintain his will, good sport, not to mention, composure in any game.”
Cortes already called the shots for the Lancers in an exhibition game against reigning UAAP champion National University last weekend in Dumaguete City.
And though they lost the match, Cortes feels the Lancers are on track to reclaimi the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) title they last won in 2013.
“I’ve learned a lot of lessons while I was away. Most of all, I have to set a good example to the players who at times, react too much to the action. Just because I was a warrior during my playing years doesn’t mean I’m the same way as a coach,” said Cortes in a brief talk on Wednesday.
“So I have to emphasize to the players that we play hard but always play clean.”
Gullas also affirmed his commitment to Cortes, who they handpicked to replace champion head coach Felix “Donbel” Belano late last year after a disappointing stint in the Cesafi that had the school finishing in third place.
“The UV administration has seen coach Gary to be our man of the hour for the upcoming Cesafi season. We see coach Gary as a competent and brilliant coach that will catapult our chances in winning this season’s championship. We believe in his capacity and how he handles the players,” shared Gullas.