HOME bets Hannah Espinosa, Shyne Villareal and Arthur Craig Pantino brace for a tough showdown with counterparts from Bacolod, Puerto Princesa and Metro Manila as the Palawan Pawnshop age-group tennis circuit unfolds on Saturday at Consolacion Tennis Courts in Cebu City.
Espinosa banners the field in the girls’ 18-and-under, Villareal gains the top seeding in the girls’ 16-and-U and Pantino leads the cast in the crowded boys’ 14-and-U division of the five-day event presented by Babolat.
Other Cebu star players seeing action in the event sanctioned by Philta are Jan Godrey Seno, Francis Lambayan, Harland Hogan, Zethley Alferes, and siblings Kristin and Cesar Salimbangon.
Out to foil them are the leading junior players from Palawan, headed by Alexie Santos, Sebastian Santos, Maxine Ong and Lara Hagedorn, Bacolod aces Toni Rose Raymundo, Shyryn Salazar and Kiana de Asis, Aklan’s Averille Sacapano, Luke Flores and Matthew Flores from Iloilo, and Cagayan de Oro’s Sebastian Mosqueda.
Julian Dayrit, Diego Dayrit, Sebastien Lhuillier and Stephan Lhuillier make up the crack team from the Big City chasing for titles in various divisions of the event serving as the first of two Group 2 tournaments slated in Cebu.
The next event is set May 22-26 at Mactan Island lawn Tennis Club.
“This series of tournaments in the provinces is part of our continuing effort to help develop the sport from the grassroots level,” said Philta regional vice-president and Palawan Pawnshop COO Bobby Castro. “We hope to discover new talents who we can developed and trained to become members of the national pool.”
Other events on tap are the boys’ and girls’ 12-, 14-, 16- and 18-and-U and the 10-unisex.