John David Velez stunned top seed Bruce Hurtado in the boys’ 18-and-under finals and completed a rare three-title romp in the Pawnshop-Palawan Express Pera Padala Mlang regional tennis tournament at the Mlang Tennis Club in Cotabato last weekend.
The 14-year-old star from Davao sustained his fierce form coming off straight-set victories in his age-group and in the 16-U finals, stunning doubles partner Hurtado, 7-6(5), 4-6, 11-9, in the centerpiece event.
The Precious International School of Davao mainstay actually held off Hurtado, 6-4, 6-3, in their earlier face-off in the 16-U finals after clobbering Andrei Padao, 6-1, 6-1, for 14-U title in the Group 2 tournament sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop headed by president/CEO Bobby Castro and presented by Slazenger.
Local ace Jazzelle Madis also claimed two victories in the girls’ side, mastering doubles partner Minette Bentillo, 6-3, 6-3, in the 16-U championship and 6-1, 6-1, in the 18-U finals of the event backed by the Unified Tennis Group, composed of Cebuana Lhuillier, PPS-PEPP, Wilson, Toby’s, BMeg, Citigreen, Babolat and Tru-Flex.
Younger sister Tennielle Madis also pulled off a pair of wins, crushing Jose Cabanting, 4-0, 4-0, for the 10-unisex crown and repulsing Jillian Manangking, 6-4, 1-6, 10-7, in the 12-U finals.
Bentillo, from Sultan Kudarat, made up for her twin losses to Jazzelle Madis by taking the 14-U crown via a 6-2, 6-0 romp over Manangking while Andrei Padao from Digos City took the boys’ 12-U diadem with a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Cedric Pamplona.
Velez actually made it a four-title feat as he teamed up with Hurtado to edge Ronnel Aboy and Basser Ali and pocket the 18-U doubles plum while Madis and Bentillo routed Jorhaine Alon and Joanne Gornes, 8-1, to clinch the girls crown.