Pagulayan Victim of Vicious Text Messages

The controversy between 2004 World Pool Champion and 2005 US Open champion Alex "The Lion" Pagulayan and the Billiards & Snooker Congress of the Philippines is taking on an ugly turn with vicious text messages aimed at Pagulayan being circulated by unidentified individuals.

However, the assistance of the major telecommunication companies has been sought in an effort to trace the origin of the messages and the mobile phones used to send the text messages.

While the BSCP said it replaced Pagulayan with Jeffrey De Luna in the Guinness 9-Ball Shanghai leg because of his clowning around and his alleged unbecoming behavior in his semi final match in the Singapore leg against Ibrahim Amir, the latest text accuses him of deliberately throwing his game against Amir.

The text message claimed it was an "arranged loss" and that Pagulayan "sold his game to a gambling group" for $5,000 down payment and another $5,000 in bets.

However, it was noted by supporters of Pagulayan that the top prize money in Singapore which he could have won was $15,000 which was more than he allegedly received from a gambling group. It was also pointed out that he could have earned enough points in Shanghai to qualify for the Grand Finals which has a top prize of some $35,000.

Pagulayan wondered aloud what his detractors would accuse him of next. BSCP president Ernesto Fajardo said the association "stands pat on our decision" even as he appealed for a stop to all this because it was "hurting the players, the sport itself and everybody involved in pool."

Meantime De Luna who replaced Pagulayan won his opening match against Indonesia's Ricky Yang 9-7 while Roberto Gomez moved one step closer to clinching a Grand Final slot when he routed Singapore's Bernard Tey 9-3.