Ariel Cabral and Hannah Divinagracia upended a couple of top seeded rivals in their respective sides to bag the MVP honors in the PPS-PEPP Tayasan national tennis championship at the Tayasan Municipal courts in Negros Oriental last weekend.
Cabral, from Bais City, repulsed local bet Kurl Barrera and Ayeen Pantaran from Pagadian City via the same 6-4, 6-4 scoreline to clinch the boys’ 16- and 18-and-under plums, respectively, while Divinagracia foiled Shara Paliwag, 7-6(2), 6-0, in the girls’ 16-U finals of the Group 2 tournament presented by Dunlop.
Divinagracia, from Bacolod City, later trounced top local entry Therese Gauran, 6-2, 6-1, in the premier division of the upset-marred event which served as part of the country’s longest talent-search put up by Palawan Pawnshop president/CEO Bobby Castro.
Divinagracia likewise rode on her masterful 6-1, 6-2 romp over Gauran in the 16-U semis then wore down Paliwag in the first set of the finals before shutting down the Valencia, Negros Oriental bet in the second frame.
Barrera, meanwhile, lived up to his top billing in 14-U class, beating David Sepulveda, 6-1, 6-3, while Armik Serillo from Dumaguete added to Sepulveda’s woes when he hacked out a tough 5-7, 6-4, 13-11 escape over the 12-U top ranked bet in the event backed by ProtekTODO, PalawanPay, the Unified Tennis Philippines and UTR (Universal Tennis Rating).
Paliwag, meanwhile, made up for her setback in 16-U finals by besting top seed Gauran, 6-4, 6-2, for the 14-U diadem while Alexa Cruspero delivered the second win for the hosts with a come-from-behind 5-7, 6-2, 10-4 win over Jan Dagoon from Olongapo City in the girls’ 12-U finals.