PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — WYNNE Arboleda had faced and conquered life’s trials before. Now he will have to go through the same unpleasant cycle once again.
His team manager and PBA Chairman Lito Alvarez won’t dip a finger into his case, and the PBA fan he mauled last Sunday — Alain Katigbac — apparently doesn’t want to see him back playing in the league ever again.
In a letter submitted to the PBA anytime this week demanded that Commissioner Renauld ‘Sonny’ Barrios and the PBA Board elevate Arboleda’s sanction from a season suspension to a lifetime ban.
“This incident should be severely dealt with. Our offices have drafted and prepared criminal charges and later a damage suit will be filed against Mr. Arboleda.
“We will likewise file a formal administrative complaint addressed to Commissioner Renauld ‘Sonny’ Barrios recommending to the PBA Board that Mr. Arboleda be banned for life from playing in the PBA or any professional circuit or meted a penalty commensurate to his actuations.
“Otherwise, Wynne Arboleda and players with similar inclinations will never learn the meaning and correct definition of ‘sportsmanship,’” said Jose Angelo Agcoaili, lawyer of Katigbac, in a statement.
Arboleda was suspended for the rest of the season Monday after kicking and punching Katigbac. It meant the loss of P2.7 million in earnings, excluding bonuses from won games, for the player they refer to as ‘The Snatcher.’
Arboleda didn’t release any statement to the media after the severe punishment was meted out, but a report quoted him as saying that the sanction was ‘too harsh.’
Even Alvarez was surprised by the PBA’s decision.
“Mabigat ang decision,” said Alvarez. “What I was expecting was a suspension for the rest of the eliminations and some community work in between. But I have to be true to my word and Burger King should abide by whatever decision the PBA had.”
Alvarez, though, did impart some advice to his long-time player.
“Ang sabi ko sa kanya, ‘knowing you, I will not be surprised if you confer with the Commissioner. Medyo mabigat ito, livelihood mo na ang nakataya dito. Tingnan mo ang options mo, but you will have to do it on your own,’” said Alvarez to Arboleda.
Doing things on his own isn’t foreign to Arboleda. He managed to acquire a life envied by many despite having humble roots, being a son of a tricycle driver and a plain housewife in Kalibo, Aklan. He is the youngest in a brood of six and the bread winner.
Arboleda also happens to be the son-in-law of Burger King majority stakeholder Bert Lina. Arboleda is married to April, with two kids, Andrea Rose and Alberto Wayne.
Meanwhile, Barrios, appearing at the PSA Sports Forum yesterday, is entitled to file an appeal before the office of the commissioner.
“It’s his right and I cannot deny him that. We just have to wait if he pursues it and how he will present his appeal. I don’t want to prejudge him,” said Barios.
However, Barriors said that if Arboleda files an appeal to shorten the length of the ban, the player will have to do it personally.
“It will be for himself. It will not be an appeal of the ballclub but an appeal of the player himself,” he added.