PASIG CITY – Johnny Arcilla and Marian Jade Capadocia entered the history books as the grand champions of the inaugural Peugeot Philippines Tennis Open National Finals last Sunday (March 20) at the Valle Verde Country Club. Both registered dominating sweeps of their opponents to take home the top prize of PHP 40,000.00 each on top of Wilson gift items plus an all-expense trip to watch this year’s French Open.
The six-month series saw qualifying tournaments in Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Bacolod, Nueva Ecija and Metro Manila. An estimated 500 players from all age groups travelled the ends of the country just to earn coveted spots in the Nationals.
The second seed and Metro Manila champion Capadocia began the day’s hostilities with a 7-5 and 6-1 upset over top seed Clarice Patrimonio. It was truly a tale of two sets as Capadocia came out blazing in the lopsided second set, a far cry from the intense first set that needed to go into a tiebreaker.
En route to the title, Capadocia dismissed Annika Mallari, Monica Therese Cruz, Bacolod City champion Alexie Santos in the quarterfinals and Clarice’s sister Christine in the semifinals. Clarice seemed to run out of gas after surviving a three-hour semifinal against Marinel Rudas after stopping Sam Martin, Nikki Ong and Kryshana Hitosis.
Later in the day, the top seed Arcilla was simply overpowering against seventh seed Roel Capampangan, 6-1, 6-0 and 6-0. Ahead 4-0 in the opening set, Arcilla allowed Capampangan to take the fifth game and that was it as he won the match’s next 14 games to close the deal.
“I am very familiar with Roel’s play because he is my neighbor in Las Pinas City,” said Arcilla, who used an effective combination of power serves and off speed returns. Capampangan meanwhile lapsed into a maze of errors that spelled his fate.
Arcilla eliminated Kyle Parpan, Janjie Soquino, Ino Canlas and Nueva Ecija champion Elbert Anasta. On the other hand, Capampangan defeated Vince Salas, Arcie Mano, Patrick John Tierro and Leander Lazaro.
Overall, it was a good weekend for both Singles champions as they also copped a share of the Doubles title Saturday (March 19). Capadocia teamed up with her sister Jella to prevail over Nueva Ecija champions Edilyn Balanga and Rudas in a three-set thriller, 6-3, 3-6 and 10-6, while Arcilla combined with Tierro to thwart Kim Saraza and Arcilla’s brother Joseph, 7-6 and 6-3.
All the winners expressed excitement at watching the French Open live. Both Arcilla and Tierro chuckled as they admitted looking forward to watch their favorite female tennis superstars but shifted gears to say that they also want to see the likes of Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer.
Marian had previously visited France twice to compete in tournaments but this will be her first French Open. She and her sister are hoping to witness another tennis sister act in Venus and Serena Williams.
Peugeot Philippines President Glenn Dasig expressed satisfaction for the successful first season. He will accompany the Filipino delegation to France where they will also visit the company’s headquarters.
As the champions go home with their prize haul, Dasig and his team are already drawing out plans for a bigger and better second season later this year. Peugeot Philippines will continue its mission to discover and develop tennis talents that can represent the country in big international events.