KIMI BRODETH booked an expected two-title romp but unranked Vince Baisa stirred up play with his own “double” in the boys’ division in the Palawan Pawnshop-Palawan Express Pera Padala (PPS-PEPP) Iloilo City national juniors tennis championships at the LaPaz Plaza courts over the weekend.
Brodeth, coming off a win in the season’s lead-off Masters Top 8 tournament in Negros Occidental last week, lived up to her top billing by mastering No. 2 Jana Diaz with a pair of 6-2, 6-1 victories in the 16- and 18-under finals of the Group I event held in conjunction with the Dinagyang Festival celebrations.
The 15-year-old student at Saint Paul’s Ormoc Foundation Inc. credited her surge to her coach Dong Velez.
“Since he handled and trained us (with younger brother Kenzo) way back in 2020, we were able to produce good results, not only in tournaments but also in academics,” Brodeth said.
But Baisa stole the spotlight in the week-long tournament sponsored by Mayor Jerry Trenas and executive assistant for Youth and Sports Rudiver Jungco, Sr., shocking top seed Ariel Cabaral with a 6-0, 6-0 rout in the quarterfinals, trampling France Dilao, 6-3, 6-1, in the semifinals then beating No. 3 Reign Maravilla, 6-4, 6-2, to snare the 16-under trophy.
The Puerto Princesa City find then shut out Cabaral for the second straight time in the 18-under second round, repeated over Dilao, 6-2, 6-1, then clipped top seed Vince Serna, 6-2, 6-1, to share MVP honors with Brodeth in the country’s longest talent-search put up by Palawan Pawnshop president and CEO Bobby Castro.
The other winners in the event presented by Dunlop were Joy Ansay and Tristan Licayan (14U), and Ma. Caroliean Fiel and local bet Anthony Castigador (12U).
Fiel also topped the 10-under unisex category via a 4-1, 2-4, 10-6 decision over Francisco de Juan III.
The top-seeded Ansay from Sta. Rosa (Laguna) toppled No. 2 Maristella Torrecampo, 6-1, 6-2, while the top-ranked Licayan from General Trias (Cavite) overpowered Rafael Santiago, 6-1, 6-1; No. 2 Fiel, also from Ormoc, wore down top-ranked Torrecampo, 7-6(3), 0-6, 10-7, in the 12-under finals, while the unseeded Castigador likewise pulled off a shock three-setter over No. 1 Gabrio Serillo, 6-7(5), 6-1, 10-4.
Danilo Sajonia and Joseph Olivar routed Roden Borres and Ramon Chavez, 8-2, to bag the men’s doubles 40s title with Sajonia later teaming up with Ricardo Sunio to edge Borres and Moises Olavides, 8-7(3), for the 50s crown in the Legends category.
The junior field heads to Roxas City, Capiz for the Gov. Fredenil Castro tournament starting January 19. For details, contact Bobby Mangunay at 0915-4046464.