Bryan Otico toppled No. 5 Fritz Verdad while Eric Jed Olivarez bundled out No. 7 Vicente Anasta to barge into the quarterfinal round of the PPS-PEPP Dagitab Tennis Festival Open at the City of Naga tennis courts in Naga City, Cebu yesterday.
Otico, who surprised veteran PJ Tierro in the recent PCA Open finals, eased past fellow unseeded bet Jan Seno, 6-4, 6-3, in the first round then outlasted Verdad in the tiebreaker, 6-3, 2-6, 7-6(5), to arrange a Last 8 duel with fancied Jeson Patrombon in the men’s singles.
The second seeded Patrombon dropped just three games to oust Jhun Alcoseba, 6-1, 6-1, and Jimmy Tangalin, 6-0, 6-1, and join No. 1 Johnny Arcilla, Tierro, No. 6 Ronard Joven and fourth seed Leander Lazaro in the quarters of the season-ending Open tournament sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop and the LGUs of Naga City led by Mayor Kristine Vanessa Chiong.
Arthur Pantino, winner of the ITF Phinma juniors crown recently, also upended No. 8 Noel Damian Jr. but will have Tierro, who advanced with a 6-3, 1-0(ret.) win over Mari Altiche, as quarters opponent.
Olivarez, meanwhile, opened with a shutout win over qualifier RJ Alforque, then stunned Anasta, 6-4, 6-4. The Western Michigan U mainstay, however, needs to hurdle the defending back-to-back champion Arcilla to reach the semis of the event tournament backed by Asia Traders Corp. and official ball Slazenger.
Joven, on the other hand, held off Marcen Gonzales, 6-4, 6-4, to seal a duel with Lazaro, who turned back Mark Alcoseba, 6-0, 7-6(4).
Meantime, the fancied bets cruised to the quarters in the women’s side with top seed Khim Iglupas thwarting Zethley Alferez, 6-3, 6-4, to set up a clash with Erika Manduriao, who booted out Tracy Llamas, 6-1, 6-1.
No. 2 Shaira Rivera whipped Alyssa Bornia, 6-0, 6-3, for a duel with Elizabeth Abarquez, who held off Danielle Carranza, 2-6, 6-2, 10-8, while No. 2 Aileen Rogan clobbered Sydney Enriquez, 6-1, 6-0, for a face-off with Reggie Santiago, who scored a 1-0(ret.) win over Ariane Nillasca.