MANILA – Fresh from his Southeast Asian (SEA) Games men’s doubles gold finish, Filipino Francis Casey Alcantara ruled the M25 Jakarta final in Indonesia on Saturday alongside Japanese Hiroki Moriya.
No. 1 seeds Alcantara and Moriya overpowered home bets and third seeds Nathan Anthony Barki and Christopher Rungkat, 6-2, 6-1, at the Sultan Hotel Tennis Court.
Just last month, Barki and Rungkat settled for the silver at the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia versus two-time gold medalists Alcantara and Ruben Gonzales, who scored a come-from-behind victory.
It was a different story in the M25 Jakarta doubles final as Alcantara and Moriya had a strong 3-0 start after the Japanese hit a forehand volley winner.
They widened their lead to 4-1 by saving three break points, and advanced to 5-2 with a swift service hold.
As the Indonesian aces were serving to stay in the set, Alcantara and Moriya caught up to 40-40 and won the deciding point, 6-2, after Rungkat netted a backhand volley.
The Filipino-Japanese duo got the early break in the second set, 2-0, after the Indonesians committed a double fault.
The lead was extended to 5-0 after Alcantara's backhand volley winner clinched the deciding point.
Barki and Rungkat managed to get on the scoreboard to trail at 1-5, and they fought hard in the following game as Alcantara and Moriya served for the championship.
At 30-30 in the seventh game, a long lob from the Indonesians gave the Filipino and Japanese two match points.
A long forehand by the Filipino sent the game to 40-40, and a netted backhand service return by the Indonesian tandem concluded the final in favor of Alcantara and Moriya, 6-1.
The Jakarta doubles champions had straight-sets wins throughout the week, besting No. 4 seeds Pruchya Isaro of Thailand and Markos Kalovelonis of Greece in the semifinals (6-4, 6-3), Indonesians Achad Imam Maruf and Faried Widyarohmadhiansyah in the quarterfinals (6-1, 6-1), and Christian Didier Chin of Malaysia and Savriyan Danilov of Russia in the first round (6-4, 6-0).
The Jakarta championship is Alcantara's second title of the season following his triumph with Isaro in March at the M25 New Delhi tournament in India.
It is the 19th Futures crown of the Filipino ATP Doubles World No. 312 on the International Tennis Federation Tour.
Alcantara, 31, became the first Philippine grand slam champion in 2009 when he conquered the Australian Open boys' doubles event with Cheng-Peng Hsieh of Chinese Taipei.