Garcia tops Squash National Open – The Manila Times


ROBERT Andrew Garcia lived up to his billing as the country’s No. 1 squash player after topping the Philippine Squash Association (PSA) National Open in Muntinlupa City last week.

Garcia, who pocketed the mixed team gold and men’s singles silver medals in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games (SEAG), needed only 36 minutes to beat Reymark Begornia, 11-8, 11-6, 11-8, in the finals.

On his way to the gold medal match, Garcia defeated Jun Paganpan in the first round 11-5, 11-5, 11-5; Lydio Espinola in the quarterfinals 11-7, 11-7, 8-11, 11-7; and Christopher Buraga in the semifinals 8-11, 11-3, 11-8, 11-8.

Begornia, on the other hand, marched into the championship round after posting victories over his father and former national player Arnel Begornia, 11-3, 11-3, 11-3; Jonathan Reyes, 11-0, 7-11, 11-2, 11-4; and David Pelino, 6-11, 11-8, 11-6, 11-2.

After the National Open, the PSA will stage the first of the three-leg PSA Bubble Closed Satellite tournament on February 23 to 25. The second leg will be on March 9 to 11 and the third leg on March 16 to 18.

“The PSA Bubble Closed Satellites 1, 2 and 3 are designed to help improve the world ranking of our core players. After the first Satellite, we will hold round-robin eliminations,” explained PSA president Robert Bachmann.

Since squash is not in the Vietnam SEAG this year, the PSA is planning to send its players abroad to prepare for the Asian Games in September.

The tournaments lined up for the Philippine squash team are Asian Junior Individual Championships (Pattaya, Thailand), World Games (Birmingham, USA), Asian Team Championships (Cheonju, South Korea), Southeast Asia Junior Individual Championships (Thailand) and Southeast Asia Cup.