Princess Catindig and Erdelyn Peralta scored a 4-3 (7-5) victory over Yi Li Shih and Yu Tung Hsu of Chinese Taipei, 4-3 (7-5), yesterday to book a quarterfinal berth in the inaugural staging of the Asian University Soft Tennis Championships at the Colegio San Agustin indoor tennis court in San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan.
The Filipino pair outclassed Mariyan Meth and Sotheary Rin of Cambodia, 4-1, to reach the round-of-16 last Sunday. But they have to beat favorites Yuki Kasai and Yui Kuwana of Japan today to assure themselves of a bronze medal.
Catindig, the UAAP MVP from San Beda University, managed to win the bronze medal in the Asian Juniors held in the same venue last week.
The 1st Asian University Soft Tennis Championships, which will serve as SEA Games test event, will give the country’s top netters the opportunity to test their own strengths and equally pit their respective skills against the best players from Japan, Chinese Taipei, India, Mongolia, Thailand, Malaysia, China, Nepal, Indonesia, South Korea and DPR Korea.
The last time soft tennis was played in the SEA Games was in Indonesia (2011) when the Philippines won one silver and five bronzes.
Philippine Olympic Committee first vice president Joey Romasanta graced the opening ceremony featuring the Sanlahi Pangkat Mananayaw of the University of Perpetual Help and performers from the Indigenous Peoples Aeta tribe in Mabalacat, Pampanga.
The two tournaments are organized by the Philippine Soft Tennis Association, headed by Col. Jeff Tamayo and the Asian Soft Tennis Federation with support from the Philippine Sports Commission and POC.