IT&E is the title sponsor of Northern Marianas Badminton Association’ second competition of the season.
NMBA’s second event for 2021 is dubbed as the IT&E Badminton Team Tournament and will feature 71 players who are spread out into five squads. The team event will kick off this Friday at the TSL Sports Complex and will run for two weekends.
Rob Harrel, IT&E executive director for Customer Operations, said supporting sports competitions, such as the NMBA-organized event is the company’s way of giving back to the community.
“We’re big on supporting events, like sports tournaments, that benefit and ‘#unITE’ our community. We want to encourage our community to keep moving and live a healthy and active lifestyle,” Harrell said.
He added that they are pleased with how the IT&E Badminton Team Tournament offers the youth and adults alike opportunities to explore new skills.
Meanwhile, NMBA president Merlie Tolentino thanked IT&E for its unwavering support and hopes to continue the association’s partnership with the leading telecommunication company to further strengthen the badminton program in the CNMI.
“Pre-COVID, IT&E sponsored our only competition in 2020. This year, despite the challenges the pandemic has brought to us, we’re on our way to our second tournament. Thanks to the support and commitment of businesses like IT&E, we’re able to provide tournaments to our players amid the difficult situation we are in,” Tolentino said.
In last year’s IT&E-sponsored event, NMBA had six doubles competition. This year, NMBA is implementing a different tournament format. The team event will both have singles and doubles games with each squad playing at least games per pairing. Points will be given to teams per game with 3 points awarded for a match won in two games and 2 for a three-game victory. The squad with the most points at the end of the round-robin tournament will be declared as champion.
NMBA will also follow players’ classification (Level A, B, and C) in the pairing of games for this weekend’s competition, basing the leveling from the results of its first event of the season—the TanHoldings Badminton Team Tournament held last month.
Level A player Andreau Galvez will lead Shirley’s Badminton Club, which won the TanHoldings event. He will team up with Lance Gallardo, Pat Fieldad, Hajin Oh, Alvin Alvarez, Sefric Veloria, Sung Chul Kim, Ian Lubao, Angie Ito, Kazuko Sodheim, Miles Guerrero, Keiko Ojima, Hiroko Tajima, and Gigi Zapanta. Dan Macario, another Level A player is on Taga Badminton Club, which also has Janelle Pangilinan, Chris Hilario, Allan Lee, Eydie Uy, Jerry Tan, Joseph King, William Liang, Mika Serrano, Shirley Kim, Windy Fernandez, Nicole Macaranas, Irish Pagarao, Lani Santos, and Kay Shiro on its roster.
Nathan Guerrero will anchor Community Badminton Club and he will be joined by Ferdie Arago, Jeff De Silva, Nap Balingit, Puy Macario, Bong Robles, Paul Fernandez, Dez Nicomedes, Lucelle Lampera, Ella Serrano, Arriane Antonio, Yoko Borja, Min Hee Oh, and Hannah Santos. United Badminton Club also has a 14-player lineup, which is made up of Ezekiel Macario, Joseph Torres, John Oh, Thomas Lim, Perry Li, Paulo Quidato, Elna Curate, Loida Ito, Leng Peraja, Sophia Quintos, Jadel Ignacio, April Rio, and Monique Mascarinas.
Completing the tournament is the Golden Racquet, which has Jordan Pangilinan, Alex Nguyen, Jojo Savellano, Eric Pena, Leonard Manuel, Joe Antonio, Lee Yong Soo, Christy Villaflor, Hannah Choi, Anneth Ta, Patricia Surima, Tolentino, Gladys Dacumos and Lala Agustino as members. (PR)