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Naga tennis ace Cruz clinches 2 more titles

/ 06:19 AM June 06, 2014

Fourteen-year-old Monica Therese Cruz continued her winning ways and captured three age-group titles in a span of two weeks, including a twin victory in the First Gen-Juntaphil tennis championships at Rizal Memorial Tennis Center.

A native of Naga who dominated the summer circuit with eight crowns in four tournaments, Cruz ruled the centerpiece 18-under event by besting top seed Nikki Ong, 6-4, 6-0.

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The incoming eighth grader at Mary Bree Village Academy also downed top pick Ong, 6-1, 6-1, to annex the 16-under category of the event which featured the country’s rising age-group stars.

Cruz stunned top seed Chloe Saraza, 6-3, 6-1, to bag the Toby’s Summer Tennis Festival’s 16-under division, also at RMTC. But Frances Santiago edged her, 6-3, 6-2, for the 18-under title.

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Cruz is already swamped with offers from top tennis schools in the United States, including the Arizona-based iTUSA tennis academy, and the Northgate Tennis Academy in Houston.

National coaches have taken notice of her talents despite playing limited tournaments in Metro Manila.

An ATF-ITF-sanctioned training camp evaluation in Bangkok noted that Cruz “plays fast and flat” and hits the ball on the rise. Her backhand, according to the evaluation, is “very similar to forehand” in power.

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