UAAP commissioner hits back at Tab Baldwin’s ‘eye surgery’ tirade against umpires


New UAAP commissioner Tonichi Pujante slams Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin’s latest criticism of referee refereeing

MANILA, Philippines — UAAP Season 84 commissioner Tonichi Pujante hit back at Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin on Sunday, May 1, after the multi-title tactician criticized referees of the league during the Blue Eagles game against the FEU last Thursday.

In a 418-word long statement, the new league chief called Baldwin’s remarks – which alluded to umpires needing eye surgery after alleged bad calls – “unnecessary and derogatory”.

“This year I had eye surgery, and I don’t think it worked out because I saw a whole bunch of things happen on the pitch,” the American-Kiwi mentor lamented after the U.S. victory. ‘Ateneo on FIRE. “I think the three guys in the gray shirts, I don’t know, maybe they need to have what I have, or maybe I shouldn’t have had what I have , I don’t know. But it was definitely a different perspective.

“I like to see it addressed, and we will definitely be talking about it officially with the commissioner,” he continued. “I think we had a bad game, but I think the refereeing team also had a bad game. I will take care of our team. I don’t know who will take care of them, so That’s what I feel.

Pujante, in his statement, said “there are appropriate channels to air grievances” and noted the “healthy and constructive interactions” with the teams’ post-match assessments.

“We received both fair and unfair criticism, and never responded, but when Coach Tab said, ‘I’ll take care of our team. I don’t know who’s going to take care of them,’ he said. It’s like I’m not doing my job, which I take offense to,” he said.

“Let me counter and say he is focused on his team duty and leave the referees to me,” he continued before mentioning that referees are “underpaid, undervalued and over-criticized.

This isn’t the first time Baldwin has criticized the UAAP referees this season, and in that particular match, in fact, even his sideline opponent Olsen Racela also gave the officials an idea of ​​what he was up to. also thought to be unequal in refereeing the Tamaraws. foreign center Emman Ojuola.

For his part, Pujante, in the same statement, admitted that some calls to the FEU were of “poor judgment” and that the manager was “reprimanded” for being hissing.

Ultimately, this side show will not affect any of Ateneo’s and FEU’s campaigns, as no sanctions for Baldwin and Racela were mentioned in the commissioner’s letter.

Pujante already made headlines earlier in the season after suspending UE head coach Jack Santiago for allegedly telling his players to intentionally harm UP star Ricci Rivero.

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