VIC Manuel said he was only looking after the welfare of Manila North teammate Karl Dehesa following a heated exchange of words with a NoviSad AlWahda player during the championship match of the 2015 FIBA 3x3 World Tour Manila Masters Sunday.
Manuel confronted Marko Savic during the early stage of the final that sparked a near melee before the referees, bouncers, and even security personnel of the Robinsons’ Place Manila stepped in to pacify the players.
The Alaska cager said his reaction came after he caught Savic hitting Dehesa in the jaw area.
“Sa ilalim nagkabangaan kami. Okay lang nung una pero ‘yung ginawa niya kay Karl Dehesa, sobrang obvious na eh.
When asked what he saw, Manuel said: “In-extend niya dito sa panga. Tinamaan. Kaya nagalit ako.”
“Sinabihan ko siya na ganyan ba ang gusto mong laro. Kahit nung nasa bench, sabi niya hindi naman niya sinasadya,” he added.
Manila North, however, couldn’t stop NoviSad’s onslaught as the United Arab Emirates side composed of Serbian players who won last year’s World Tour final, beat the hometown team, 21-14.
Manuel said the Filipinos’ fouls affected their chances of winning the title.
Under 3x3 rules, a team which has seven or more fouls will shoot two free throws unless it reached 10 where it will take two charities plus possession of the ball.
“Kinapos lang kami. Problema lang naman ‘yung mga foul. Dun kami tinalo sa free throw at ball possession. Halos 12 ‘yung fouls namin,” said Manuel.
‘The Muscle Man,’ however, looks forward of playing in the World Tour final in Abu Dhabi this October, having qualified for the event.
He vowed to work hard when the Manila North plays against top caliber 3-on-3 teams.
“Masaya na rin kami sa na-achieve namin. Kahit ano mangyari doon, ibibigay namin ‘yung best namin,” said Manuel.