BORACAY – Sisi Rondina and Bernadeth Pons put up a show in a dominant 21-18, 21-6 win over Ekaterina Filina and Ekaterina Zazhigina of Russia to advance in the quarterfinals of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Boracay Open presented by Globe Saturday at the White House Beach Station 1 here.
After an impressive opening day win, Rondina and Pons failed to gain an outright passage to the top eight after losing to Japan’s Satono Ishitsubo and Asami Shiba, 16-21, 19-21, earlier in the day.
But the top Philippine pair were all-business in the Round of 12 match, as Rondina was solid in the service area and sand coverage in the second set, while Pons took charge in attacking the net, leaving the Russians rattled.
Rondina and Pons then became the last Filipina team standing, as Bea Tan and Dij Rodriguez bowed to reigning two-time Asian U21 champions Pawarun Chanthawichai and Thatsarida Singchuea of Thailand, 12-21, 12-21.
Earlier, Tan and Rodriguez cruised to a 21-7, 21-15 win over Malaysia’s Tan Hsi Yan and Tasha Mae, giving the Philippines two teams in the Round of 12.
Leaving behind a heartbreaking 21-17, 13-21, 14-16 loss to Singapore’s Eliza Chong and Lau Ee Shan in last Friday’s opener, Tan and Rodriguez were in the zone on both ends of the sand court to send the Malaysians packing, while keeping the three-time Beach Volleyball Republic On Tour champions in the competition.
Inspired by the early morning cheering crowd that packed the venue, Rondina and Pons went toe to toe with world No. 86 Ishitsubo and Shiba in both sets, but the Japanese were simply too classy to remain undefeated in two matches.
Rondina and Pons opened their campaign with a 21-14, 21-8 conference of Japan’s Shinako Tanaka and Miyuki Matsumura Friday.
Jackie Estoquia and DM Demontaño bowed out of contention, but not without putting up a valiant stand against Filina and Zazhigina, 14-21, 21-19, 13-15.
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