The NMI National Badminton Team will have its first warm-up event for the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games 2022 this weekend, as the group competes in the 2022 Guam Badminton Invitational Tournament.
The men’s squad’s Nate Guerrero, Andreau Galvez, Jordan Pangilinan, siblings Ezekiel and Daniel Macario, Leonard Isaiah Manuel, and Paulo Jerome Quidato, will leave for Guam this morning and will be joined on the trip by Janelle Pangilinan, Jenine Savellano, Jeanelyn Cardinio, Patricia Nicole Surima, Windy Ann Fernandez, and Mikamaika Serrano.
The 13-player NMI delegation will play in the men’s and women’s singles and doubles and mixed doubles events in the open, classification (A, B, and C) and age group.
Quidato, the youngest player on the group at 16 years old, will participate in both age group and classification events and is looking forward to the experience, as he competes in Guam for the first time.
“I’m very excited to compete in Guam. I am looking forward to playing against new people who have very different and unique playing styles. I really want to face these new strong players to help myself improve and to better my playing style,” the Marianas High School student said.
“I see this competition as an opportunity to learn from other players. By playing against them, I will be able to see where I am now, as far as my level of play is concerned,” Quidato.
Guerrero seconded Quidato and said the whole team is just fortunate to finally have a chance to compete off-island. He added that the timing is perfect, as the national team was just selected in January after months of tryouts and preparations and they would need every opportunity to play in actual competitions before the tough ride in the Pacific Mini Games.
“We need to test ourselves against any competition just so we can see where we are at right now and for other players to experience what it’s like to play in a tournament against players they haven’t seen before,” said Guerrero, who was with the national team that participated in the 2019 Pacific Games in Samoa and was joined by Galvez, the Pangilinans, and the Macario brothers.
The 2022 Guam Badminton Invitational Tournament will be held at the newly opened Guam Badminton Sports Center in Barrigada with games set to start tomorrow. In the competition, the NMI bets may also challenge players that Guam could send to Saipan for this year’s Pacific Mini Games.
“We would like to thank the Guam National Badminton Federation for extending the invitation to our players to compete in the tournament this weekend. The GNBF and the Northern Marianas Badminton Association have developed a partnership that works toward providing opportunities for our players and officials’ development and growing the sport in our region,” NMBA president Merlie Tolentino said. (PR)