it's final, the DOJ has allowed eric menk to play again in the pba by approving his citizenship status. another good news for the pba and the philippine basketball!
from the inquirer:
Itís go for Menk;
PBA says ĎNo!í
Posted: 9:44 PM (Manila Time) | July 26, 2001
By Marc Anthony Reyes
Inquirer News Service
GAMES TODAY (Philsports)
5:15 p.m.--Tanduay vs Purefoods
7:30 p.m.--Ginebra vs Red Bull
THEREíS good news and bad news for Tanduay Gold.
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The good news is, Eric Menk has been finally allowed to play professionally after the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Thursday ruled that he indeed has Filipino blood.
Now, for the bad news: The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) wonít let him play until the next conference because the deadline for submission of the final lineup for the ongoing Commissionerís Cup had expired last Saturday.
It was a devastating blow for the Rhummasters, who for almost two years now have been trying to bring back Menk into the fold despite initial disapproval by the DOJ and the Bureau of Immigration (BI).
"We are trying our best to convince the PBA to allow Menk to play," said Chito Bugia, Tanduay team manager. "In fact he (Menk) is there appealing with the league officials even as we speak. It would be a pity if he couldnít play for us tomorrow."
PBA acting commissioner Sonny Barrios said Thursday night the decision remains unchanged.
Tanduay needs to beat Purefoods twice to make it to the semifinals.
Batang Red Bull battles Barangay Ginebra at 7:30 p.m., needing only to win to advance.
Justice Secretary Hernando Perez on Wednesday asked the BI to recognize Menk as a Filipino citizen after it was established that Menkís mother, Lucia Padua Menk, wasnít an American citizen yet when she gave birth to Eric on Aug. 24, 1974.
Bugia said Menk is regularly practicing with the Rhummasters in their Quiapo gym. He said Menkís presence today is critical "not only to the teamís chances of advancing but also to his teammatesí morale."
"Though heís not yet in perfect shape, his presence will be enough to perk up our team which has suffered these past few conferences," Bugia said.
Winners in this twin playoff will face each other in a best-of-five semifinal series. Defending champion San Miguel Beer and Alaska Milk will figure in a separate semis series after winning over Mobiline and Sta. Lucia Realty, respectively.
With a report from Gerald Lacuarta