Mica Ella Emana turned in a pair of superb performances to annex two titles while John David Velez settled for one victory due to cramps in the PPS-PEPP Manila Polo Club National age-group tennis tournament at the MPC outdoor courts in Forbes Park in Makati City over the weekend.
The second-seeded Emana trounced No. 1 and doubles partner Marielle Jarata, 6-1, 6-2, to claim the girls’ 12-and-under plum then the rising Quezon City star upended top seed Julia Ignacio, 6-3, 6-4, in the semis then repeated over Jarata, 6-4, 6-1, to clinch the 14-U diadem.
Velez, on the other hand, crushed Keno Enriquez, 6-0, 6-0, to run away with the boys’ 14-U crown but the Davao ace failed to buck cramps and dropped a tough 4-6, 6-7(6) loss to Gabriel Gurria from Imus, Cavite in the 16-U finals of the Group 2 tournament presented by Dunlop and sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop-Palawan Pera Padala.
Unable to endure the pain, Velez yielded a 0-1 (ret.) loss to QC’s Loucas Fernandez in the 18-U championship. But with a win and two finals stints, he shared the MVP honors with Emana.
“While breaks didn’t go Velez’s way, Emana’s twin title feat should inspire the other aspirants that hard work and determination can topple even the best in the fold. With the PPS-PEPP weekly tournaments, we hope to motivate and produce new faces and future stars,” said Palawan Pawnshop president/CEO Bobby Castro.
Other winners in the ranking tournament backed by Asiatraders Corp. and sanctioned by the Unified Tennis Philippines, made up of PPS-PEPP, Cebuana Lhuillier, Wilson, Toby’s, Dunlop, Slazenger and B-Meg were Kean Enriquez from Imus, Cavite, Manila Polo Club bet Lukas Yupangco and siblings Renee and Bea Acena.
The fifth-ranked Enriquez whipped top seed John Lim, 4-0, 4-0, to bag the 10-unisex title; the unranked Yupangco stunned No. 4 Joshua Diva, 6-4, 6-7(4), 10-3, to snare the 12-U title; No. 7 Renee Acena held off third seed Justine Maneja, 6-3, 6-3, for the girls’ 16-U diadem; and top seed Bea Acena clobbered No. 3 Bliss Bayking, 6-0, 6-2, for the 18-U plum.
The Acenas likewise took the girls’ 18-U doubles title with an 8-0 rout of Kryshana Brazal and Maneja; while Gabby Avila and Markus Ginoo took the boys’ title with a 1-0 (ret.) win over Fernandez and Velez.
Emana and Jarata also posted an 8-0 romp over Brazal and Jiana Hernandez to pocket the 14-U doubles title with Velez earlier teaming up with Lance Fernandez to beat Joshua Diva and Ian Election, 8-2, in the boys’ final. The Lim brothers, John and Kriz, romped off with the 10-U doubles plum with an 8-3 victory over Vhiele and Nhiele Dilao.
Meanwhile, Bulacan will host the next stop of the nationwide, year-long age-group circuit on Aug. 17-22 at the Pulilan Tennis Club. Listup is ongoing. For details, call PPS-PEPP Program Development director Bobby Mangunay at 0915-4046464.