Filipino Francis Casey Alcantara and Dutch partner Sem Verbeek barged into the doubles semifinals of the 2017 Cairns Tennis International Tennis – Australian Futures 7 being held at the Cairns International Tennis Centre in Queensland, Australia.
Seeded second in the tournament, Alcantara and Verbeek thumped Australians Harry Bourchier and Dayne Kelly in the first round, 6-7, 6-3, 10-8; and Jayden Court and Will Maher in the quarterfinals, 6-3, 6-3.
The Filipino-Dutch duo arranged a semifinals meeting with Australians Michael Look and Benjamin Mitchell, who stunned the No. 3 tandem of Scott Puodziunas and Gavin Van Peperzeel of Australia, 7-5, 3-6, 10-3.
Meanwhile, veteran international junior campaigners Arthur Craig Pantino and Michael Francis Eala failed to advance to the next round of the 30th Sarawak Chief Minister’s Cup II – ITF Junior Circuit Grade 3 at the Sarawak Lawn Tennis Association Center in Malaysia.
Pantino suffered a 1-6, 4-6 decision against third seed Indian Digvijay Pratap Singh while the 15-year old Eala fell short against 11th pick German Gerhardt Marius Becker, 2-6, 6-1, 6-3, in their respective second-round matches.
The 16-year old Pantino and Chinese partner Lu Pengyu also lost in the doubles play as they absorbed a heartbreaking 6-4, 6-7 (3), 8-10 defeat to fourth seeds Chinese Yu Bingyu and Zhou Xinmu.
In girls’ doubles, Filipina Rafaella Villanueva and Taiwanese Wu Ssu-Yi were not as lucky as they bowed to fifth seeds Australian pair of Ivana Popovic and Megan Smith, 1-6, 4-6, in the tournament sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation.
EMIL C. NOGUERA