MANILA -- Top seed John Bryan Otico boosted his title-retention bid after posting a 6-0, 7-5 victory over No. 8 Ronald Joven to reach the men's singles semifinal round of the ongoing Philippine Columbian Association (PCA) Open Tennis Championships at the PCA indoor shell court in Paco.
The win set up the 19-year-old Otico against Elbert Anasta, who eliminated fourth seed and 2016 champion Patrick John Tierro, 7-5 (5), 3-6, 6-1, in the quarterfinal round of the country's biggest and longest-running tournament.
Also marching to the Final Four were second seed Francis Casey Alcantara and fourth seed Jeson Patrombon. Alcantara, the pride of Cagayan de Oro and currently No. 281 in the world doubles rankings, survived seventh seed Francis Verdad, 6-4, 7-6 (4), while Patrombon, a doubles silver medalist in the 2015 SEA Games, stunned 13th seed and eight-time champion Johnny Arcilla, 7-5, 6-4.
In the doubles category, top seed Alcantara and Nio Tria defeated No. 12 Allen Manlangit and Jordan Cimafranca, 7-5, 6-2, to enter the semifinal round.
Alcantara and Tria will be up against third seeds Verdad and Leander Lazaro, who scored a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Daniel Estanislao and Raymund Diaz in the quarterfinal round.
The other semifinal match will feature second seeds Arcilla and Joven against seventh seeds Tierro and Mendoza.
Arcilla and Joven downed fifth seeds Albert Villamor and Joseph Arcilla, 6-1, 6-1, while Tierro and Mendoza advanced after their opponents, fourth seeds Patrombon and Noel Damian, retired after the first set. The score was 6-1 in favor of Tierro and Mendoza.
Meanwhile, the top four seeds in the women's singles all made it to the semifinal round. No. 1 Marian Capadocia downed fifth seed Christine Patrimonio, 6-2, 6-1 to advance against third seed Khim Iglupas, who won over unseeded Althe Fay Ong, 6-3, 6-2.
Second seed Anna Clarice Patrimonio, the 2017 SEA Games silver medalist, beat No. 8 Arianne Nillasca, 6-0, 6-2, to forge a semifinal showdown with fourth seed Shaira Hope Rivera, who won over No. 6 Akiko de Guzman, 6-2, 6-0. (PNA)