UAAP MVP De Guzman dominates start of PH Badminton Open title defense

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UAAP MVP De Guzman dominates start of PH Badminton Open title defense

TOP FORM. Mika de Guzman returns a shot in the 2024 Philippine Badminton Open.

Philippine Badminton Open

Mika de Guzman, a three-time UAAP MVP, makes it look easy at the start of her title defense in the Philippine Badminton Open

ANTIPOLO CITY, Philippines – Mika de Guzman kicked off her Philippine Badminton Open title defense just as expected.

De Guzman, a three-time UAAP MVP, cruised past La Salle’s Mia Manguilimotan, 21-8, 21-7, to secure a spot in the women’s singles round of 16 on Friday, June 7, at the First Pacific Leadership Academy here.

“I don’t think about being a defending champion, but in my heart and in my mind, I know I need to give my 100 percent in the game, and no regrets,” said De Guzman, also the champion in the the 2023 APACS Kazakhstan International Series.  

De Guzman will advance against a familiar foe in Anthea Gonzalez of the University of the Philippines, who rallied to a 21-23, 21-17, 21-14 victory over Sarah Joy Barredo of National University. 

“I will just have to give my best every game… I know that I’m going up against top players from other schools,” said the 22-year-old De Guzman. “So I really need to give my best because there are no easy opponents. I’m actually excited to play against everyone.” 

The men’s side, though, turned out to be a shocker as Clarence Villaflor of Cadiz-JBA/Apacs dethroned Mark Velasco, 21-17, 21-13, in the round of 32. 

Villaflor, a former national juniors champion, will battle the winner of the match between Carlo Remo of Ateneo and Zachary Chua of Bianca Carlos Badminton Academy. 

In the men’s doubles, Smash Pilipinas and National University standouts Julius Villabrille and Solomon Padiz Jr. kept their own title dense going after a round of 64 triumph.

Villabrille and Padiz, the 2023 APACS Kazakhstan Future Series champions, downed former UAAP MVP Winston Aquilo and Lanz Ramirez of Smart, 21-10, 21-12.

The matches in the Philippine Super 500 tournament – backed  by Smart, Mizuno, the Philippine Sports Commission, and the MVP Sports Foundation, and supported by Jollibee, Chowking, and FPLA – are aired on the Facebook pages of Smart Sports, Puso Pilipinas, and the Philippine Badminton Association. –

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