The top age groupers in Visayas and Mindanao take center stage beginning today as they slug it out for top honors in the Palawan Pawnshop-Palawan Express Pera Padala Butuan Cagayan de Oro regional tennis tournament at the Nazareth Tennis Club.
Close to 250 entries mix it up in nine age categories, each raring to trade shots for supremacy and ranking points in the Group 2 tournament, sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop and presented by Slazenger.
Sultan Kudarat’s Vince Tugade, Ramon Bentillo and Minette Bentillo, along with Gen. Santos City’s Klyde Lagarde, Mlang, Cotabato’s Tennielle and Jazzele Madis, Reyman Saldivar Jr. of Kabacan and Davaoeños John David Velez, Patricia Velez and Danna Abad head the crack list of seeded entries in the event serving as the fourth leg of the 58-stage circuit put up by the country’s leading pawnshop and remittance center to boost the sport and help produce future national players.
“It will be another showcase of top-notch tennis from among our leading age-groupers in the Vis-Min regions,” said Palawan Pawnshop president/CEO Bobby Castro. “But we also expect some surprises given the depth of the competing field.”
The Sonsona siblings – Steven, Renest and Christopher, and Brent Cortez banner Tubod, Lanao’s bid while Oroquieta’s Nash Agustines, Sidney Enriquez and Heinz Carbonilla of Zamboanga are also tipped to contend for the crown in their respective divisions.
Out to defend their turf after local bets Jonnelle Llavore, Gennifer Pagente, Aubrey Calma and Casey Padilla while Ormoc’s Allain Ocat, Khenz Justiniani of La Carlota, and San Carlos, Negros’ Bliss Bayking will lead the Visayans’ charge in the five-day tournament backed by new sponsor Asiatraders Corp. and sanctioned by Philta.
Focus will be on Steven Sonsona and Minette Bentillo, who are out to sustain their top form coming off victories in last week’s third leg in Butuan City where they also bagged the MVP honors in their respective sides.
Meanwhile, coach Patricia Concon-Puzon, a pro tennis mentor with master pro level 3 of Australia Tennis Professional Coaches Association, will conduct a three-day free clinic starting tomorrow (Friday).
For details call 09154046464.