Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Velasco, De Guzman set for Philippine Badminton Open title defense

Mark Velasco

The tournament that determines who are the best Filipino shuttlers in the country starts on Wednesday, with the 2024 edition of the Philippine Badminton Open commencing action at the First Pacific Leadership Academy Badminton Center in Antipolo City.

A Philippine Super 500 tournament, the PBO boasts of a PhP 1,000,000 prize pool, with PhP 100,000 allocated for the singles champions and PhP 50,000 goes to the runners-up. PhP 15,000 awaits the losing semifinalists.

In doubles, champions get to split PhP 120,000, while PhP 60,000 goes to the runners-up. Losing semifinalists get to take home PhP 30,000.

Day 1 action will feature all men's singles matches, with defending champion Mark Anthony Velasco earning a first round bye. Top-seed Rabie Jayson Oba-ob also earned a bye and will face the winner of Mark Arki EnseƱado or Kirk Nathan Abarquez in the next round.

Women's singles champion Mika de Guzman will open her campaign on Friday, having earned a first round bye. She awaits the winner of Danice Jhean Colao and Mia Manguilimotan, which takes place on Thursday.

In doubles, Smash Pilipinas standouts Julius Villabrille and Nicole Albo are set for their respective title defenses.

The duo will kick off its mixed doubles retention campaign on Saturday against Bien Miraflor and Rhafi Santos on Saturday, but much earlier on that with their respective partners in men's and women's doubles.

Villabrille teams up with Solomon Padiz Jr, while Albo joins forces with Lea Inlayo, as each pair will start their quest on Friday.

The PBO is backed by SMART, Mizuno, the Philippine Sports Commission, and the MVP Sports Foundation. It is also supported by Jollibee, Chowking, and the First Pacific Leadership Academy, while Maynilad, MWell, and Cignal serving as presenters.

Matches will be shown on the Facebook pages of SMART Sports, Puso Pilipinas, and the Philippine Badminton Association, with Cignal also set to broadcast the matches on June 11, which will take place at the Gameville Ball Park in Mandaluyong City.

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