Ros Pedrosa and Mikaela De Guzman posted contrasting victories to clinch the men’s and women’s singles titles of the MVP Second Badminton Cup, respectively, Friday evening at the Olympic Badminton Center Ugong, Pasig.
The two mainstays of Smash Pilipinas proved their mettle in the respective finals against their opponents to clinch the championship trophies in this tournament sponsored also backed by SMART, MVP Sports Foundation, the Philippine Olympic Committee, the Philippine Sports Commission, Leisure and Resorts World Corporation, Metro Pacific Investments, Concrete Stone Corp., and Robinson’s Land.
Pedrosa took down Jewel Angelo Albo in a thrilling three-set match, completing the comeback after an hour and 20 minutes, 16-21, 21-15, 21-16.
The National University product emphasized that veteran experience and game management were the keys to winning another title after his run at the 2019 SMART National Open.
On the other hand, De Guzman needed to fend off Jaja Andres in the second game after a relatively comfortable first game, 21-14, 21-17, to take the women’s singles title.
“At first, I prepared mentally for this tournament myself with the help of my coaches in the national team, and of course, coach Kennie Asuncion because this is my first time playing again this year.” De Guzman, the UAAP Season 82 Rookie of the Year, said. “Ang tagal din magka-tournament uli, so I had to prepare my mindset.”
Fellow national team members Thea Pomar and Nicole Albo stamped their dominance in women’s doubles, ending the tournament unscathed over University of the Philippines student-athletes Lea Inlayo and Susmita Ramos, 21-15, 21-8.
NU standouts Solomon Padiz Jr. and July Villabrille then closed out the action-packed three-day schedule with a rousing three-setter over veteran internationalist Paul Pantig and new partner Christian Bernardo 21-13, 19-21, 22-20, in men’s doubles.
The duos of Pomar-Albo and Padiz-Villabrille brought home P30,000 and P40,000, respectively.
Anthea Gonzales completed the women’s singles podium with a walkover win over the top player in the division Sarah Barredo. Barredo had to retire in her semifinal match against Andres after going down with an injury on her left knee.
Rabie Oba-ob took down Mark Anthony Velasco in the third-place playoff to win men’s singles bronze, 21-13, 21-19.
In doubles play, Alvin Morada and James Villarante were also awarded a walkover win against JM Bernardo and Michael Clemente to round up the podium.
Jochelle Alvarez and Andrea Hernandez finished third for the women’s doubles after winning over Althea Fuentespina and Aubrey Masongsong, 21-15, 21-17.
“I think it’s a great tournament for the players because it was so long after their last competition, really happy for the players,” the Malaysian mentor said. “It is now time for them to have a tournament and have a good showing.”