BUKIDNON native John Bryan Otico upset top seed Francis Casey Alcantara of Cagayan de Oro City, 6-4, retire in the men's single quarterfinals of the 2nd Mayor James Gamao National Invitational Tennis Open Championship at the Panabo City twin courts on Thursday, June 14.
The 18-year-old Otico, a Grade 12 student of De La Salle Santiago Zobel, thus, arranged a semifinals showdown with defending champion and third seed Patrick John Tierro of Subic who escaped past Eric Olivarez, Jr., 6-4, 4-6, 6-1.
Otico said Alcantara just could not take the scorching heat anymore as they were still playing before noon.
"Sobrang kainit pero kaya paman nako ang init (It was really hot but I endured it)," he said, adding that he hopes to play better when he faces Tierro again in the semifinals today. Both also collided in last year's semifinals where the more seasoned Tierro prevailed and went on to win the championship.
Otico said, "Ma-break lang nako iyang serve, kana lang kay mao man iyang weapon. Mahimo nako na, makakuha ko og advantage (I just have to break his serve because that's his weapon. If I do that I can gain an advantage)."
He, however, vowed to give his 100 percent in the game.
The other semifinals match will pit second seed Johnny Arcilla against fourth seed Vicente Elberto Anasta. Arcilla of Butuan City subdued Fritz Verdad, 6-3, 6-3, while Anasta demolished Leander Lazaro, 6-1, 6-4.
The netfest, which stakes a total cash prize of P150,000, is co-presented by Merco and Selecta.