Averille Sacapano lived up to her billing while Al Francis Andrade bucked the odds and upended his fancied rivals to nail two titles each in the Palawan Pawnshop-Palawan Express Pera Padala regional age-group tennis tournament at the Puerto Princesa and Camp 570 Tennis Club yesterday.
Sacapano stamped her class in the girls’ 16-and-under play with a run of straight-set victories, including a 6-3, 6-1 romp over Franzyn Billones in the finals. The 14-year-old rising star from Boracay also swept her way to the 18-U crown, capped by a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Khyshana Hitosis in the championship.
But it was the fifth-ranked Zamora who provided the spark in the Group 2 tournament presented by Slazenger as the New Washington, Aklan bet crushed top seed Maxine One, 6-1, 6-0, in the semis then whipped Lance Hitosis, 6-1, 6-1, to annex the boys’ 16-U plum. He later wore down Lorenzo Legaspi, 6-0, 5-2(ret.), to rule the premier division of the tournament sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop and backed by Asiatraders Corp., exclusive distributor of Slazenger.
“Zamora’s feat underscored the level playing field that has been the norm in the circuit which continues to produce promising talents, particularly in the countryside,” said Palawan Pawnshop president/CEO Bobby Castro.
Earlier, local talent Billones derailed Sacapano’s bid for a three-title sweep as she snared the 14-U diadem with a tough 6-4, 6-3 victory over her top-seeded rival while Jade Micayabas, another rising Puerto Princesa netter, held off Chisha Santos, 6-4, 6-4, to clinch the girls’ 12-U crown in the five-day event sanctioned by the Philippine Tennis Association headed by president and Paranaque City Mayor Edwin Olivarez.
Meanwhile, Hitosis, also from the host city, rebounded from his setback to Andrade with a 7-6(4), 6-0 win over Jennard Gonzales to nail the 14-U title while third seed Luis Ong took the 12-U crown with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over James Banac.
Olongapo’s Darwin Cosca, on the other hand, survived Justin Micayabas, 4-5(5), 4-2, 4-1, in the semis then clobbered Andreaskoeph Ubay, 4-2, 4-1, to capture the 10-unisex title.