The PBA’s annual All-Star Weekend is set to kick off in Laoag City, but there has been a conspicuous absence of a contingent from the Talk ‘N Text Tropang Texters.
Officials of the PBA were expecting members of the team to arrive for the event yesterday, but no one from the squad showed up.
Jimmy Alapag, Kelly Williams, and Japeth Aguilar were slated to play in the Veterans versus Rookies-Sophomores-Juniors game, while Ranidel De Ocampo was part of the lineup for the Greats versus Stalwarts matchup.
Talk ‘N Text coach Chot Reyes, who was tapped to lead the Veterans squad, had earlier begged off from All-Star duties because of commitments involving the MVP Sports Foundation and the SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national program.
Alapag had been expected to beg off from the event, since he was dealing with two of his family members in critical health conditions.
According to one source close to the Talk ‘N Text camp, the players were asked by management not to participate in the weekend.
Another source, speaking on condition of anonimity, said that Talk ‘N Text management had ordered the team to go on vacation, including coaches and officials. Talk ‘N Text team manger Aboy Castro is reportedly in the United States.
The no-show comes as top team officials remain miffed about the officiating in the Tropang Texters’ Game Seven loss to the B-MEG Llamados.
“May karapatan kang magsalita kung feeling mo agrabyado ka. Ano, tatahimik na lang kami? Hindi naman tama yun,” said team owner Manuel V. Pangilinan.
(InterAKTV is part of InterAksyon.com, the online news site of TV5, which is chaired by Pangilinan.)
The team has filed a letter to the PBA complaining about the officiating in the game. According to team executive Ricky Vargas, Talk ‘N Text is seeking concrete changes to officiating the games.
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