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Thursday, April 25, 2019

NSA drops Philippine's top billiard players

THE Billiards and Snooker Congress of the Philippines (BSCP) just created a controversial move that will surely raise eyebrows and draw flak from the players and billiard community.

BSCP president Bong Ilagan notified the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) of the reorganization of the current line-up of the national billiards team, which was considered an offshoot to the internal squabble between Ilagan and the side of BSCP chairman Aristeo Puyat and Billiards Managers and Players Association of the Philippines (BMPAP) president Perry Mariano.

Affected in the current shake- up were top caliber players Dennis Orcullo, Francisco “Django” Bustamante, Efren “Bata” Reyes, Reynaldo Grandea, Rubillen Amit and Iris Rañola.

But Mariano is confident that what Ilagan wanted will not happen.

Sea Games gold medal winner Dennis Orcullo
STIRRING THE NEST. The factions in the BSCP, the national governing body for billiards, have affected several athletes, including the pros. One faction has dropped some of the top players from the national squad, including Sea Games gold medal winner Dennis Orcullo (above) . (SUN.STAR FILE)



“How can you change Dennis Orcullo without knowing who will replace him or who you will train to replace him?” said Mariano.

“Dennis stays, kasi may board pa ang BSCP. Out-voted na si Ilagan. He (just) speaks for himself not (for) BSCP,” Mariano, who also managed the career of Orcullo, told Sun.Star Cebu yesterday.

BMAP and the players had an election last July with Puyat getting elected as president and Mariano as the secretary general. However, the Philippine Olympic Committee, the umbrella organization of all national sports associations is yet to recognize that election, making Ilagan still the official national sports association (NSA) head for billiards.

Orcullo and Rañola were gold medalists in the 2011 Sea Games in Indonesia, and was expected to defend their titles in the biennial games in Myanmar in November.

On the other hand, POC and PSC had approved sending Orcullo to the World Games in July in Colombia along with a few selected athletes in other fields.

Aside from being BSCP president, Ilagan also named himself the training director of BSCP.

According to him, pro players can still be included in the national team “when needed,” but before they can be included in the national team, they need to undergo the tryouts which will be three months before the Myanmar SEA Games.
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