Kimi Brodeth hopes to ride the momentum of her title romp in the Masters Top 8, gunning for no less than two titles in the PPS-PEPP Iloilo City national juniors tennis championships, which get going today (Wednesday) at LaPaz Plaza courts.
The Ormoc City star turned back Bacolod’s Hannah Divinagracia, 4-6, 6-0, 6-0, to claim the girls’ 16-U trophy in last Monday’s Masters Top 8 in San Carlos, Negros Occidental, which kicked off another busy season for the country’s leading and rising players in the junior ranks.
But Brodeth, who racked up a number of PPS-PEPP leg titles in last year’s edition of the country’s longest talent-search presented by Dunlop, will not only be shooting for her age-group crown but also for the 18-U plum in the Group 1 tournament sponsored by Mayor Jerry Trenas and executive assistant for Youth and Sports Rudiver Jungco, Sr.
Three other campaigners who shone in the Masters Top 8 are also in the fold, including boys’ 12-U winner Gabrio Serillo, girls’ 12-U champion Maristella Torrecampo, and girls’ 14-U titlist Jana Diaz, who, however, has opted to compete in the 16-U play of the event put up by Palawan Pawnshop, headed by president/CEO Bobby Castro.
Over 150 entries are vying for titles in nine age-group divisions with the 10-U category back in the PPS-PEPP calendar with Ma. Caroliean Fiel, finalist in last week’s Masters’ girls’ 12-U class, co-headlining the mixed cast that includes Naseem Serillo, Prince Crisosto and Francisco de Juan III.
Vince Serna and Ariel Cabaral, along with Benedict Santiago and Randy Pausanos, banner the boys’ 18-U field with Sanchena Francisco out to crowd Brodeth in the distaff side of the premier category of the event backed by ProtekTODO, PalawanPay, the Unified Tennis Philippines and UTR (Universal Tennis Rating).
Cabaral also leads the 16-U roster that also drew Reign Miravilla and siblings Frank and France Dilao with Joy Ansay and Francisco all primed to foil the projected Brodeth-Diaz title showdown.
Fierce action is also expected in the other categories with Al Tristan Licayan, Lexious Cruz, Gabrio Serillo and Rafael Santiago bracing for a spirited battle in the boys’ 14-U cast and Ansay, Torrecampo, Jan Dagoon and Alexa Cruspero tipped to dispute the girls’ crown.
Gabrio Serillo, meanwhile, looms as the player to beat in 12-U class which also features Claudwin Tonacao and siblings Gil and Pete Niere with Torrecampo and Fiel bracing for a fiery duel in their side of the battle.
Meanwhile, Roxas City, Capiz will host the next leg – the Gov. Fredenil Castro tournament – on Jan. 19-24. For details, contact Bobby Mangunay at 0915-4046464.
The Mayor Alfredo Benitez juniors tilt, on the other hand, is slated on Jan. 26-31 in Bacolod City to be followed by the Mayor Luigi Marcel Goni tournament on Feb. 2-7 in Bais City, Negros Oriental.