Rondina-Gervacio duo pulls PHI into the quarterfinals
Mark Escarlote on May 05, 2018 11:07 AM
Sisi Rondina and Dzi Gervacio pulled off a historic feat as the duo barged into the quarterfinals of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Manila Open at the Sands SM By The Bay Saturday morning.
Filipina sand heroes Sisi Rondina and Dzi Gervacio engineered a historic first as the duo advanced in the quarterfinals after hurdling a taller and more experienced Canadian duo in an impressive 21-17, 21-17, Round of 12 win in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Manila Open at the Sands SM By The Bay Saturday morning.
The Pinay tandem outdueled Megan Nagy and Caleigh Cruickshank in the second match of the day following the sorry loss of another PHI pair of Lot Catubag and Karen Quilario in three sets against the young Thai pair of Singchuea Thatsarida and Chanthawichai Pawarun, 36-34, 23-25, 15-17.
“From the beginning, ganun talaga yung mindset namin. Syempre ayaw din namin mapahiya yung bandera natin, syempre bigay-todo kami. Hindi man sya kailangan, pero sa sarili namin kinakailangan para syempre worth it naman yung pagpunta nila at paggising nila nang maaga,” said Rondina, three-time UAAP beach volleyball champion and member of the national team that participated in the 29th Southeast Asian Games beach volleyball tournament in Singapore. “Syempre sa sarili din namin magiging worth it din yung mga pagod namin.”
Rondina and Gervacio, who finished the pool play with a 1-1 win-loss record, will take on seeded Japanese pair of Shinako Tanaka and Sakurako Fuji in the quarterfinals later at 3:30 in the afternoon.
The duo got off to a great start as they built an early 9-3 lead with great ball placements and heady shots that kept the Canadians scrambling on defense. The Canadian tied the frame at 14 before the PHI fired a 6-2 blast with the visiting pair committing crucial errors including a long hit by Cruickshank that put the Filipinas at set point, 20-16.
Canada saved a set point but Nagy threw away the frame with a service error.
The Canadians held an 11-10 advantage in the second frame before the Filipinas created a sizeable 18-14 lead. Canada cut their deficit to three, 19-16, before Gervacio scored to put the Filipinas at match point. Nagy saved a match point but Cruickshank surrendered the duel with a long service.
“Ako hindi ko inexpect na malalayo yung mararating namin, na aabot kami ng Day 2. Kasi ako personally I haven’t played internationally and I know for a fact na matatangkad yung mga kalaban namin,” said Gervacio.
Two-time BVR national champions Quilario and Catubag, both policewomen based in Davao, gave their Thai opponents, who were members of Thailand’s junior national team, a match to remember before bowing down.
The duo got the crowd on their feet in an incredible display of endurance and will in the opening set.
Quilario pushed the PHI at match point, 23-22, after saving three set points but the Thais took the next three points to force a deciding set.
Catubag delivered a huge kill in the tight third set that gave the PHI another chance to wrap the match, 14-13. The Thais tied it at 14 before Pawarun committed a service error that knotted the score at 15.
The Thai duo moved at match point as Catubag went down with a cramping right leg that forced the PHI to call a medical timeout.
Catubag returned to action but the exhausted Filipinas were slow to recover as the Thais capitalized to steal the win.
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