Otico, Milliam gain Metro Manila Open q’final berths

– Playing at the center court of the Philippine Columbian Association (PCA) indoor shell court made John Bryan Otico very nostalgic. He recently graduated with a business management degree from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California. “It’s exciting to be back here after 4 years. This is also the last shell court that I played on,” said the 23-year-old native of Maramag, Bukidnon. On Wednesday, Otico secured a quarterfinal berth in the men’s singles of the Metro Manila Open tennis tournament after his opponent, No. 7 seed Jed Olivarez, retired in the second set due to fatigue. The score was 6-2, 4-1. He will meet the winner between No. 13 seed Ronard Joven and Vince Tugade. “I’m confident with my game. Whoever I meet, I’ll just fight,” said Otico after the match. He was given a wild card entry and is seeded No. 9 in the tournament offering PHP300,000 in cash to the champion. In 2017, Otico defeated two-time SEA Games gold medalist Patrick John Tierro in the final to become the youngest PCA Open champion at 18. He was No. 2 behind Jeson Patrombon in Philippine Tennis Association (Philta) rankings when he left for the US in August 2019. In the women’s singles category, No. 2 seed Alexa Joy Milliam downed Danna Mariela Abad, 6-2, 6-4, to reach the Final Eight. The 17-year-old netter from La Carlota, Negros Occidental will battle Mikaela Vicencio, a 6-2, 6-1 winner over qualifier Kaye Laurice Mustaza, for a place in the semifinal round. “I’ll just do my best every match and hopefully, I can make it to the final,” said Milliam, who is eyeing her second women’s title after the Rina CaƱiza Open held at the PCA outdoor court last February. National players Marian Capadocia and Kim Iglupas also marched to the quarterfinal round of the event sponsored by Sulu Vice Governor Toto Tan, Marawi City Mayor Majul Usman Gadamra, East-West Customs Brokerage Corp., San Jose Salt, Gimaca Realty Corp. and Legalas Trading Corp. Seven-time PCA Open champion Capadocia will take on National University (NU) player Elizabeth Abarquez, who scored a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Nina Alcala. Iglupas, a University of Arizona graduate, ousted No. 3 seed Alexie Santos, 6-3, 6-2, to arrange a quarterfinal showdown with US-based Makeilah Nepomuceno, who prevailed over Anika Diwa, 6-4, 6-0. No. 4 seed Kaye Anne Emana likewise advanced following her 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 win over Tiffany Nocos. She will face wild card Jesselle Marie Ante, who stunned No. 7 seed Althea Faye Ong, 6-3, 2-6, 7-6. (

Source: Philippines News Agency