The whirring sound of shuttlecocks and the squeaking of flat-soled sneakers were back at the TSL Sports Complex over the weekend as the 2021 TanHoldings Badminton Team Tournament unfolded with Shirley’s Badminton Club dominating the competition.
The team made up of captain Andreu Galvez, Lance Gallardo, Walker Wang, Jerry Tan, Leonard Manuel, Windy Fernandez, Loida Ito, Rowena Shouck, Irish Pagarao, Roxe Lazaro, Jadel Ignacio, Gladys Dacumos, Joseph King, Jerome Malasarte, and Perry Lei finished on top of the heap with 50 total points and was declared champion of the two-day tournament.
Shirley’s started their rampage with a narrow 10-8 win over United Badminton Club on Friday. Jerry Tan and Roxe Lazaro dropped the team’s first match, losing to John Oh and Min Hee Oh, 8-21, 17-21. Perry Lee and Walker Wang then got Shirley’s on the board by default over Gary Bandoja and Leo Xu before Loida Ito and Rowena Shouck gave Shirley’s the lead after nipping Lucille Lampera and Christy Villaflor, 21-17, 17-21, 21-17.
Lance Gallardo and Leonard Manuel made it two in a row for Shirley’s after they beat up Paul Xiong and Henry Quian, 21-8, 21-7. After Joseph King and Jerome Malasarte dropped a two-setter against Leo Xu and Sung Kim, 20-21, 19-21, Andreu Galvez and Windy Fernandez avenged that defeat and basically clinched the matchup with an easy 21-6, 21-10 win.
Shaking the cobwebs in their debut, Shirley’s went on to dominate their next matchup against a hapless Community Badminton Club side, 15-3, last Saturday. Galvez and Jadel Ignacio gave the team a quick 3 points by dominating Nathan Guerrero and Ella Serrano, 21-10, 21-12. Ito and Fernandez kept the ball rolling with a 17-21, 21-11, 21-11 victory over Serrano and Lani Santos. Wang and Manuel made it three in a row following a 21-12, 21-12 shellacking of Yoko and Taka Borja.
Hajin Oh and Taka Borja gave CBC something to smile about after outlasting Wang and Lei, 21-16, 19-21, 21-19 before Shouck and Fernandez completed the near shutout with a 21-7, 21-8 beatdown of Gigi Zapanta and Arriane Antonio.
Later that Saturday, Shirley’s kept its momentum going with a 13-5 victory over Golden Racquet Badminton Club. Wang and Lazaro gave them a 3-0 lead after a 21-14, 21-15 win over Alex Nguyen and Amor Malasarte. Galvez and Gallardo then took a 21-13, 21-24 victory over Allan Relativo and Nap Balingit. Golden Racquet scored a win over Shirley’s after Jordan Pangelinan and Miles Guerrero plastered a 21-9, 21-8 beating over Gladys Dacumos and Lei. Ito and Ignacio got Shirley’s back on track with a hard-fought 18-21, 21-16, 21-17 triumph over Hiroko Tajima and Sun Young Kim. Malasarte and King then got the better of Puy Macario and David Li, 15-21, 21-17, 21-18, to give Shirley’s another 2 points, before Fernandez and Shouck wrapped up the match with a 21-5, 21-18 win over Hannah Santos and Patricia Surima.
In its last game, Shirley’s got a victory lap following a 12-6 win over Taga Badminton Club. Gallardo and Manuel were 21-8, 21-16 victors over Allan Lee and Rommel Monserat. Ito and Fernandez followed that up with a 21-14, 21-15 conquest of Nicole Macaranas and Merlie Tolentino. Galvez and Lazaro then teamed up to defeat Kazuko Sondheim and Kevin Barros, 21-9, 21-13, before Lei and Malasarte grinded it out with a 21-18, 8-21, 21-20 edging of Hapi Gabriel and Ian Lubao. Hannah Choi and Mika Serrano gave Taga its first win over Shirley’s after easily handling Dacumos and Ignacio, 21-4, 21-10. Dan Macario and Joseph Torres then salvaged a 21-17, 19-21, 21-19 victory over Gallardo and Wang to complete the matches.
Galvez was humble after Shirley’s domination of the Northern Marianas Badminton Association-organized competition.
“I did not expect my team to be the champions, like everyone else we came to play and to have fun, but I am very grateful for my team who made the experience a very memorable one. I am also happy and proud of the new players who are really new to the sport, considering this was their first-ever tournament, they showed tremendous love and commitment to the game and more importantly becoming part of the NMBA family,” he said.
Golden Racquet finished second with 37 points, followed by Taga with 35 points with UBC and CBC finishing with totals of 29 and 28 points, respectively.
The TanHoldings Badminton Team Tournament awarded 3 points for sweeps, 2 points for wins, and 1 point for losses.