MANILA, Philippines - Fernando Jose Arguelles and Toni Rose Raymundo essayed a pair of straight-set victories to run away with two titles each in the Palawan Pawnshop-Palawan Express Pera Padala regional age group tennis circuit presented by Tecnifibre at the St. Michael Tennis Court in Pontevedra, Negros Occidental yesterday.
The top-seeded Arguelles, the 15-year-old ace from PTA-Bacolod, defeated Reyniel Marcellana twice, hacking out a tough 7-5, 6-4 win in the boys’ 16-and-under finals and cruising to a 6-1, 6-1 romp in the premier 18-and-U class.
Raymundo, also 15 from PTA Lacta-La Carlota, matched that two-title feat with a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Valerie Desoyo in the girls’ 16-and-U finals and a 7-5, 6-2 win over Keanu Flores in the 18-and-U division of the four-day event sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop and Technifibre and held for the first time in Pontevedra.
Reynan Tapic-Mahusay also grabbed the spotlight by pulling off a stunner of a win over top seed Karl Baran to snare the boys’ 14-and-U crown in the sixth leg of the 29-stage nationwide circuit sanctioned by the Philippine Tennis Association.
Tapic-Mahusay, the 13-year-old protégé of Fr. Angelo Ansola, the event organizer who also heads Pontevedra’s junior tennis development program, recovered from a second set meltdown and outlasted Baran in a marathon 2:45-hour encounter, 6-4, 1-6, 10-8.
“Reynan’s win should further boost our tennis program here and inspire the other young players to strive for excellence,” said Pontevedra Mayor Jose Maria Alonso.
Fourth seed Guillian Bandoquillo, from Praxevilla Tennis Club, Dumaguete, also upset top seed Pete Rodriguez of PTA-Bacolod, 6-1, 6-3, to clinch the boys’ 12-and-U crown although Rodriguez made up for the setback with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Joshua Raymundo in the 10-unisex finals.
PTA Lacta-La Carlota’s Keana de Asis stunned No. 1 Averille Sacapano in another thrilling duel, 1-6, 6-4, 10-8, to pocket the girls’ 12-and-U plum while Sacapano, from Boracay, Aklan got back at her tormentor by winning the 14-and-U diadem, also via tiebreaker, 7-6, 6-7, 10-3.
“This nationwide circuit program is part of our long-term commitment to promote sports as one of the primary focus of our corporate social responsibility and at the same time produce and develop new talents for future national teams,” said Palawan Pawnshop COO Bobby Castro.
Meanwhile, junior tennis action resumes Friday with the staging of the seventh leg at the Eco 4 Tennis Club. Free listup is ongoing. For details, contact Philta referee and tournament director Bobby Mangunay at 0915-4046464.