The Pinay pairs of Sisi Rondina and Dzi Gervacio, and Lot Catubag and Karen Quilario came away with one win apiece on Friday, in the first round of the 2018 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Manila Open at the SM Sands By the Bay.
Rondina and Gervacio pulled off a surprising sweep against towering Americans Lindsay Fuller and Kaley Melville (21-12, 21-16) in their morning match, before succumbing to Spanish duo Paula Sorra and Maria Belen Carro (20-22, 21-23).
The pair from Tagum Catubag and Quilario went cold in their first outing against Dutch tandem Katja Stam and Julia Wouters (13-21, 11-21), before keeping their tournament hopes alive with a tight win against Hong Kong’s Yuen Ting Chi and Au Yeung Wai Yan (21-13, 18-21, 15-11).
A proud Cebuana, Rondina shared that her and the rest of the Philippine contingent were inspired by the home crowd.
“Nilaro lang namin. Ako, honestly, hindi ako sila pinuri na, ‘Uy ang lalaki nila, ang tatangkad nila.’ Parang shino-showcase ko na lang kung ano ang kaya kong gawin na kayang ipagmalaki ng mga Pilipinong nanonood sa amin,” said one of the most decorated local beach players.
The hosts squads move on to the Round-of-12. Catinag and Quilario face Thai pair Pawarun Chanthawichai and Thadsarida Singchuea, while Rondina and Gervacio take on Candians Megan Nady and Caleigh Cruickshank at 8:50 a.m.
Other Philippine bets did not fare well.
Beach Volleyball Republic founders Charo Soriano and Bea Tan fell to Japan’s Ayumi Kusano and Takemi Nishibori (10-21, 9-21), and to Nagy and Cruickshank (12-21, 15-21). DM Demontaño and Jackie Estoquia, on the other hand, dropped to Germans Klink Leonie and Lisa-Sophie Kotzan (16-21, 12-21), and Paraguay pair Michelle Amarilla and Erika Bobadilla (19-21, 13-21).
All four local men’s teams — Kevin Juban and Raphy Abanto, Calvin Sarte and Jade Becaldo, Ranran Abdilla and Edwin Tolentino, and KR Guzman and James Pecaña — also failed to move on to the next round.