Gaby Zoleta resumes her campaign in the national junior circuit, bannering the girls’ 16-and-under cast in the PPS-PEPP Manila Southwoods age-group tennis tournament which gets going today at the Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club courts in Carmona, Cavite.
The rising star from Lucena City is also vying in the tougher 18-U play, gaining the No. 2 seeding next to Francesca Cruz with Julia Ignacio and Margaud Rosales, Kaye Emana, Carol Galvez and Carylle Alonte also tipped to crowd the favorites in the Group I tournament presented by Dunlop.
Close to 200 entries are clashing for top honors in nine categories in singles play with five titles up for grabs in the doubles of the five-day tournament serving as part of the country’s biggest and long-running talent search put up by Palawan Pawnshop headed by president/CEO Bobby Castro.
Red Ante, Miguel Castillo, Santino Dee and Ryan Velandres headline the boys’ 18-U roster with JT Bernardo, John Prince Lim, Andrei Alvarez and Castillo expected to dispute the 16-U diadem in the tournament sanctioned by Unified Tennis Philippines made up of PPS-PEPP, Cebuana Lhuillier, Wilson, Toby’s, Dunlop, Slazenger and B-Meg.
Bernardo also looms as the player to beat in 14-U side which drew the likes of Andre Coladilla and youngsters John Prince Lim and France Dilao while Melody Dizon, Mika Emana, Carrilyn Pesengco and Sandra Apostol leading the title chase in the girls’ section.
A full-packed 32-player field, meanwhile, gears up for a fierce showdown in the boys’ 12-U category with siblings Prince Lim and Kriz Lim installed as the top two seeds with brothers Frank and France Dilao along with Kevin Sanger, Lucas Go, Joss Po and Gavin Kraut also coming into the event all primed up.