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MPBL team suspended due to alleged game-fixing

MANILA -- The Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) has suspended SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins amid allegations that the team is involved in game-fixing activities.

Senator Emmanuel Pacquiao, owner of the fledgling league, announced the suspension on Monday night and called on the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to make its own investigation on the matter.

"This should serve as a serious reminder to all other teams in the MPBL that we are intolerant to any form of cheating and other unsportsmanlike behavior," Pacquiao said in a statement.

“We formed MPBL precisely to promote fair play in basketball so I don't want to hear anything that would besmirch the name of the league,” he added.

The Marlins became a subject of scrutiny for both Pacquiao and MPBL commissioner Kenneth Duremdes after losing most of their first 18 games by double digits, including a recent string of 30-point defeats.

The two officials said the mere fact that SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins remains winless after 18 games is already an alarming sight.

They two league officials are convinced that the team is indeed involved in “game-fixing and other related scheming activities.”

The Marlins were supposed to face the Pampanga Giant Lanterns in the first game of a scheduled triple-header at the Alonte Sports Arena in Biñan on Tuesday. (PNA)

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