Alcantara seizes Olivarez Cup title
Wild-card entry Francis Casey Alcantara pulled off a hard-earned 6-2, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (5), 6-4 victory over top seed Patrick John Tierro Sunday to claim the men’s singles title of the sixth Olivarez Cup tennis championships at Olivarez Sports Center in Sucat, Parañaque.
In winning his first title since graduating from Pepperdine University with a communications degree, the 23-year-old Alcantara asserted his supremacy over long-time Davis Cuppers Tierro and three-time champion Johnny Arcilla, his semifinal victim.
“This is a very good start for my pro career,” said Alcantara, the 2009 Australian Open boys’ doubles co-champion who deftly mixed his shots to put Tierro mostly on the defensive.
Alcantara became an All-American doubles player in last year’s NCAA Division 1 where he made the quarterfinals in both singles and doubles in partnership with Alex Sarkissian.
“My win over Arcilla was also a key. That really pumped me up,” added Alcantara, a Philippine Tennis Academy alumni from Cagayan de Oro.
Alcantara, who walked way with the P50,000 top prize, said he will plunge headlong into the pro circuit this year.
In winning the Australian Open, Alcantara worked in tandem with Hsieh Cheng-peng of Chinese Taipei. He teamed up with Treat Huey in winning the men’s doubles bronze and helped give the PH team another bronze in the recent Southeast Asian Games in Singapore.
Khim Iglupas bagged the women’s singles title last Saturday with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Marian Capadocia, while Miles Vitaliano and Shaira Hope Rivera won the girls’ 14-under and 16-under crowns, respectively, to gain the right to represent the country in the WTA Future States in October in Singapore.