THE MVP Sports Foundation-Philippine Badminton Ranking System (PBaRS) unwraps on Friday with around 550 entries slugging it out for top honors and ranking points at the Excel Badminton Center in San Fernando, Pampanga.
Hostilities in the boys’ and girls’ Under-19 and the Open divisions usher in the day-long competitions with Carl Villanueva battling Andrew Pineda, Carl Caraan facing John Quibranza, Dandy Lojares mixing it up with Diego Nealega, and Kristian Barrios tangling with Daniel de Castro in the U-19 boys’ singles at 9 a.m.
U-19 top seed Lorenzo Yason takes on Thomas de Guzman at 3:30 p.m., while Mark Alcala, who dominated the U-15 division in the first six legs of the annual P1 million event sponsored by the MVP Sports Foundation, sets out as the No. 3 seed against Michael Ligan at 4 p.m.
National team members also strut their wares at 6 p.m. with top seed defending champion Toby Gadi colliding with JC Clarito, No. 2 Paul Vivas squaring off with Diego Libiran and third seed Peter Magnaye battling EJ Viloria.
The five-day event, sanctioned by the Philippine Badminton Association headed by Vice President Jejomar Binay with sportsman Manny V. Pangilinan as chairman and Rep. Albee Benitez as secretary general, also lured players from Escoses Training Camp, Golden Shuttle Foundation, Allied Victor, JLTC, Team Prima, Excel Badminton, MSI Jrs., Whackers Badminton Academy, Hundred Islands Badminton Club and Space Shuttle Kidapawan.
All winners from last year’s sixth leg at Powersmash in Makati are also in the fold, along with former national players Arolas Amahit, Jr, Ian Piencenaves, Jaime Junio and Alfredo Mailon.
Girls’ action starts on Saturday with fancied Bianca Carlos kicking off her bid for another U-19 singles crown along with No. 2 Patrisha Malibiran, third seed Ma. Victoria Vizmonte, No. 4 Janelle de Vera, and fifth ranked Pauline Escobar.