Top Filipina players showcase talent in WTA Future Stars Qualifiers
ABS-CBN Sports on Sep 16, 2016 07:05 PM
The country’s top-ranked 14-under and 16-under tennis players face-off at the Cebuana Lhuillier Girls’ Tennis Challenge qualifying tournament, for a shot at the WTA Future Stars finals in Singapore, from September 16 to 18, 2016 at the Valle Verde Country Club tennis courts.
The country’s top-ranked Filipina junior tennis players faced-off in an exciting opening day of competition to fight for the coveted championships berth to represent flag and country in the October 2016 WTA Future Stars tournament in Singapore.
The first exclusive three-day pre-qualifiers tournament held in the Philippines, Cebuana Lhuillier’s Girls’ Tennis Challenge is sanctioned by the Philippine Tennis Association (PhilTA), with both 14-under and 16-under divisions already in full swing at the Valle Verde Country Club tennis courts in Pasig City.
Led by 14-under division favorite, Alexandra Eala, the opening day of matches started on a good note as she dominated rival, Bliss Bayking, in the best of three contest—6-0, 6-1—for a strong start in her WTA Future Stars finals campaign.
“We’ve been sending representatives to the WTA tournament for years, but this is the first time that we're actually having an exclusive pre-qualifier competition here in the Philippines as we want to send no less than the best players in the country. The two winners will represent our country in Singapore at the Asia Pacific WTA Future Stars so this is a great opportunity to showcase the abilities of Filipino athletes. With the quality of players that qualified and joined this tournament, I’m excited to see the kind of matches we are going to witness in the coming days. This pre-qualifying tournament will definitely boost our chances in taking home the WTA Championship crown this year,” said PhilTA Chairman of the Board and Cebuana Lhuillier President and CEO Jean Henri Lhuillier.
In other exciting ties, 16-under division ace player, Carlyn Bless Guarde, bested her first obstacle, Mary Aubrey Calma, 6-3, 7-6, in a tie-break thriller. Sydney Ezra Enriquez, another promising 14-under division challenger, also clinched her first victory over competitor, Kiana Louis De Asis, 3-6, 7-6, in tie-break. Indeed, the Cebuana Lhuillier Girls’ Tennis Challenge is off to a hot start, as all 16 competitors are going all out for a shot to play against Asia’s best at the WTA Finals in Singapore.
“The WTA commends Cebuana Lhuillier for its efforts in organizing a national tournament for the Philippines’ finest junior players. It is with such support that an initiative like the WTA Future Stars can fulfill its maximum potential to encourage the next generation to pursue their passion in tennis,” said Vice-President of WTA Asia-Pacific and Tournament Director of the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore, Melissa Pine.
Along with the qualifiers, the WTA Future Stars Clinic for kids was also rolled out. Present throughout Asia-Pacific countries—China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and the Philippines, among others—the grassroots development initiative aims to introduce the sport of tennis to less-privileged communities.
Catch these promising young tennis stars out-swing each other for another round to determine the country’s best 14-under and 16-under heading to the WTA Future Stars tournament in Singapore. The Cebuana Lhuillier Girls’ 14-under and 16-under Tennis Challenge is slated on September 16 to 18, 2016 at Valle Verde Country Club, Pasig City.