By Jon Perez
The Men's A division pairs of, from left, John Nguyen and Wijay Pruwajatan, Ryan Achas and Lito Mendoza, Macoi Aguda and Edwin Montoya pose for a group photo after Tuesday night's games in the Inaugural Michelob Ultra Badminton Tournament at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium. (Contributed Photo)
The Inaugural Michelob Ultra Badminton Tournament wraps up today with champions in the five divisions set to be crowned when competition begin at 6pm at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium.
Aside from the finals of the five divisions, the knockout round of the mixed doubles class will also be played in the final day of the tournament, which is being supported in part by Michelob-MARPAC, At Your Service, SaipanCell, JET Holdings, PMIC, Serenity Salon, Elegance Café, NIC, Canton Restaurant, National Office Supply, Makeover Beauty Salon, Megavision, Venus Beauty Salon, Vargas Construction, Esolutions Inc., Philippine Consul General Wilfredo Maximo, and N.C. Matsumoto.
Tournament committee chair Macoi Aguda is requesting all players in the mixed doubles division to come on time since games will start promptly at 6pm.
Games in the mixed doubles will be played in a regular race-to-21 best-two-out-of-three sets.
The men's A doubles crown will be contested by the pairs of Lito Mendoza and Ryan Achas and Wijay Pruwajatan and John Ngyuen after they both finished with similar 3-1 records.
Pruwajatan and Nguyen got back at their opening round tormentors when they scored a 17-21, 21-13, 21-10 win over Achas and Mendoza on Tuesday night.
Tonight's game will again be expected to be a nail-biter as both pairs are aching to win the crown.
In the men's B division, Joseph Santos and Alvin Alvarez are waiting for their finals opponent after they compiled a 5-1 record, losing only by default against Ariel Mariano and Sherwin Samson.
Santos and Alvarez ended their campaign with a 31-27 win over the duo of Saul Gargallo and Roger Vales.
The teams of Mariano and Samson, Gargallo and Vales, and Robert Reyes and Gerry Balarao, will contest the second finals berth.
In other men's B division games last Tuesday, Samson and Mariano scored consecutive wins over the pairs of June Pineda and Jojo Savellano, 31-20, and Gary Bandoja and Aries Cordero, 31-28.
Reyes and Balarao also defeated Bandoja and Cordero, 31-15, while winning by default against Erick Peña and Jonathan Perez.
The duo of Babes Cielo and Loyda Ito will face off with the tandem of Marlene Peraja and Emily Vargas in the finals after both teams finished with identical 5-1 cards.
It was an amazing comeback for Cielo and Ito after suffering a 28-31 loss to Samonte and Savellano on opening day. They went on to win their next five games, ending their campaign with a 31-9 demolition of the pair of Elma Labuson and the come-backing Janice Bungalos.
Peraja and Vargas wrapped up their assignments with consecutive wins against Lanie Bartolome and Lot Abuel, 31-24, and Juliet Ramos and Janis Parcon, 31-17.
Savellano and Samonte earned some consolation as they will meet Shirley Kim and Malou Malasarte in the battle for third place.
Savellano and Samonte defeated Labuson and Bungalos, 31-13, and Bartolome and Abuel, 31-29, in the final day of the elimination round. Kim and Malasarte escaped with a 31-25 decision against Ramos and Parcon.
The pairs of Paul Navarro and Efren Cacdac and Angie Ito and Ana Rose Omori enjoy a twice-to-beat advantage in the men's and women's C division finals.
Navarro and Cacdac will meet Obet Aguilar and Sherwin Pusillos in the men's C final, while Ito and Omori will once again test the partnership of Lucelle Lampera and Lherie Galvan.
Navarro and Cacdac ended their campaign with a 21-13, 21-8 crushing of Rick Brien and Cris Hilario, while Ito and Omori grinded out a 21-12, 22-24, 21-13 triumph over Lampera and Galvan.
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By Jon Perez