Top seed Johnny Arcilla and second pick Patrick John Tierro posted similar victories on Friday to advance to the semifinals of the 35th Philippine Columbian Association (PCA) Open-Cebuana Lhuillier men’s tennis tournament at the PCA indoor shell-clay court in Paco, Manila.
Arcilla, an eight-time champion, banked on his vast experience and superb court coverage to outclass former junior campaigner Argil Lance Canizares, 6-0, 6-1, in the quarterfinals of the tournament sanctioned by the Philippine Lawn Tennis Association.
The 36-year-old Arcilla arranged a semifinal showdown with third seed and fellow Davis Cup veteran Elbert Anasta, a 6-4, 6-4 winner over Ronard Joven.
“I’m taking it one game at a time. I need to stay focused at all times especially in this crucial stage of the competition. Elbert is also a veteran player and you need to play your best [against him],” said Arcilla, who dominated the 2001, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013 editions of the annual netfest.
Sharing the spotlight was Tierro, who scored an equally impressive 6-2, 6-3 win over seventh seed Rolando Ruel Jr.
He will be meeting Filipino-Italian Marc Reyes in the Final Four of the event supported by Dunlop, Whirlpool, Chris Sports, Mary Grace, Aseana City, PVL Restaurant, Maverick, Compass, Babolat, Fujidenzo, Just Jewels, Rexona, Palm Rock, Coca Cola Femsa Philippines, Pearl Garden Hotel, Pearl Lane Hotel, Manny Pacquiao, L&M and Monte.
Reyes ousted Fritz Verdad, 6-2, 6-2.
Tierro is looking to reclaim the crown he surrendered to junior netter Alberto Lim Jr. last year.
Lim won’t be able to defend his crown, as the 17-year-old netter is busy preparing for the US Open juniors championship beginning next month in New York City.
In men’s doubles, Arcilla and Joven will be playing Kim Saraza and Joseph Arcilla in the first semifinal game while Tierro and Jed Olivarez Jr. take on Anasta and Marc Anthony Alcoseba in the other semifinal pairing.