MELBOURNE, Australia — Australia assistant coach and former NBA star Luc Longley has accused Philippines coach Chot Reyes of inciting the violence that marred a World Cup qualifying match between the teams on Monday.
The former Chicago Bulls star described the bench-clearing brawl which saw 13 players, including four Australians, ejected from the match as the worst thing he had seen on a basketball court.
Longley, who has been praised for his efforts to protect Australian player Chris Goulding from a large group of Philippines players, said Reyes had called on his players during a time out to "hit somebody, put somebody on their arse."
Reyes has defended the comments, which were picked up by television microphones, as a routine instruction to his players to foul on fast breaks.
Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Longley rejected Reyes' comments and criticized the Philippines players for posing for a group selfie after the brawl had abated. Basketball Australia has sought to limit further comment on the brawl which is being investigated by world governing body FIBA.