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Philippine Mavericks absorb back-to-back losses in India



Playing without their marquee stars for the second day in a row, the Philippine Mavericks were on the other end of the ledger, as the OUE Singapore Slammers took the match, 30-22, in Day 2 of the International Premier Tennis League, Friday evening at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, New Delhi, India.

Unlike the previous loss, the Mavs fought hard in this particular match, starting with the men’s legends singles set. Carlos Moya started the sweep for the Slammers with a 6-4 victory over Mark Philippoussis. Philippoussis went with his power serves and produced six aces on 65% first serve percentage. Moya registered only eight winners, but the 13 unforced errors from the Mavericks captain helped him snare the win and the lead for Singapore.

It was a down-to-the-wire finish in the following set that saw Slammers’ Dustin Brown and Karolina Pliskova win, 6-5, over Treat Huey and Jarmila Gajdosova. Both pairs held on to their service games as they shrugged off the break point opportunities of each other. Brown and Pliskova combined for a hefty 76% of first serves converting to 21 points. The Slammers took the fight out of the Mavericks in the tiebreak, 7-2, to take the set and pad the match advantage.

Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic pushed the Singaporean lead further with a 6-3 drubbing of Ajla Tomljanovic in the women’s singles set. Both ladies struggled on their service, with Bencic doing just a little better with 56% first serve percentage. The story of the set were the 15 unforced errors by Tomljanovic. The miscues gave Bencic the chance to put away the set for good. The Swiss also broke Tomljanovic’s serve three times to cruise to the win.

Sensing urgency, and trailing 12-18, the Mavericks’ duo of Huey and Edouard Roger-Vasselin went toe-to-toe with Nick Kyrgios and Marcelo Melo in the men’s doubles set. After another gruelling set, the Slammers pushed their match lead to seven with a 6-5 set win, virtually sealing the match win.

Huey and Roger-Vasselin had a field day on the service line with 85% of first serves in, and converting 18 of them. It was the timely use of the Coca-Cola Power Point by Kyrgios and Melo that spelled the difference. The Slammers narrowly edged the Mavericks in the tiebreak, 7-5, to get the set.

Kyrgios then went on to put the finishing touches on the win after escaping Roger-Vasselin in the men’s singles set, 6-5. The hard-hitting Kyrgios peppered the Frenchman with ten service aces. Kyrgios also had 13 winners, including the aces, but his 11 unforced errors keep Roger-Vasselin in the set. Just like the previous match, Kyrgios was able to use the Coca Cola Power Point wisely to get away with the win and complete the sweep.

The Philippine Mavericks finished the India Leg with two disappointing losses, but look to bounce back against OBI UAE Royals on December 14, Sunday, in Dubai 11:30pm Philippine time.


Grew to appreciate various sports from tennis to judo. True-maroon kiddo since the new millennium. Fanboy. Singer. Occasional sports writer.

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