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Monday, April 21, 2014

CNMI jr. players win in Quality Cup 2014

Tania Tan and Julia Ishikawa won the doubles championships against fellow CNMI bets Grace Choi and Malika Miyawaki and the eventual doubles winners also advanced to the finals of the U14 singles. Four CNMI players dominated the girls U14 competition in last weekend’s Quality Cup Tennis Tournament 2014 played at the Pacific Islands Club indoor tennis courts in Guam.

Tania Tan and Julia Ishikawa won the doubles championships against fellow CNMI bets Grace Choi and Malika Miyawaki and the eventual doubles winners also advanced to the finals of the U14 singles.

The top-seeded Tan and Ishikawa made it to the championship round after a 10-2 victory over Guam’s Allyssa Merletti and Victoria Smith last Sunday morning. Choi and Miwayawi then arranged an all-CNMI finale after a similar 10-2 triumph over Guam’s Nozomo Yamasawa and Kanasta Abrams.

In the finals, which was shortened to an eight-game pro set due to time constrains and rain delay, Ishikawa and Tan walked away with an 8-1 win.

In the girls U14 singles, Ishikawa was seeded first in the nine-player field and drew a bye in the first round before defeating Guam’s Tara Usita-Lee in the upper bracket quarterfinals, 10-2. Ishikawa then topped the fourth-ranked Grace Choi in the semis, 8-2, to book a finals ticket. Before bowing to Ishikawa, Choi notched a 10-6 win over Abrams to march into the semis of the top half of the draw.

In the bottom half, the second-ranked Tan walloped Merletti, 10-1. Merletti set up a quarterfinals tiff against Tan after a 10-7 win over Smith. Next up for Tan was Miyawaki, who whipped Yamasawa, 10-1, and the former bagged an 8-3 triumph in the semis to set up a finals date against Ishikawa.

Ishikawa and Tan’s title showdown was postponed due to time constraints and will be played on Saipan on a later date as per the tournament director’s instructions.

The four CNMI players were forced to play in an indoor court to complete their doubles games and singles semis matches, as they flew back to Saipan last Sunday afternoon. The rest of the Quality Cup matches were played in outdoor courts and Sunday’s games were rained-out.

“I’d like to thank PIC for graciously providing an indoor venue for our girls U14 division matches,” Quality Cup tournament director Joe Cepeda said in a press statement sent to Saipan Tribune last Sunday. “The visiting players from Saipan enjoyed the tournament and were glad to have played out their remaining matches before having to head back home.”

Besides the U14 contests, this year’s Quality Cup also has competitions in the U10, U12, U16, and U18 junior divisions and adults singles and doubles.

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