by Ian Marshall, Editor
Similarly for their female counterparts it was a successful start. Adriana Diaz, like Brian Afanador from Puerto Rico, duly secured first place in her group without due alarm, as did the host nation duo of Paula Medina and Luisa Zuluaga Likewise it was top spot for the Dominican Republic’s Eva Brito and for Mexico’s Yadira Silva, the defending champion.
However, lower down the order in both disciplines, there were surprises; the highest rated in the group experiencing defeat.
In the Men’s Singles event the player to cause the greatest upset was Venezuela’s Cecilo Correa, he accounted for Ricardo Villa, the no.6 seed and like Marcos Madrid from Mexico (11-4, 11-4, 11-9) to secure first place in his group.
Similarly, the Dominican Republic’s Mariano Lockward beat Colombia’s Joaquin Villegas (11-7, 18-20, 11-6, 12-10); Venezuela’s Marco Navas accounted for Guatemala’s Hector Gatica (11-9, 12-10, 12-14, 11-3), whilst Panama’s Omer Avi-Tal overcame the Dominican Republic’s Isaac Vila (11-13, 11-7, 11-6, 11-8).
Mariano Lockward, Marco Navas and Omer Avi-Tal, like Cecilo Correa remained unbeaten to top their groups, for the vanquished, with the exception of Isaac Vila, it was the only reverse; thus second place and progress to the main draw was gained. In addition, Isaac Vila lost to Puerto Rico’s Yomar Gonzalez (7-11, 11-7, 11-9, 11-8) who ended the day in second place in the group.
Meanwhile in the first stage of the Women’s Singles event Guyana’s Trenace Lowe and the Dominican Republic’s Yasiris Ortiz alongside Cuba’s Shelly Machado Fernandez and Lizdainet Rodriguez were the surprise names to secure first places.
All remained unbeaten, all succeeded against the highest rated player in their respective groups.
Trenace Lowe accounted for Puerto Rico’s Daniely Rios (13-11, 11-8, 11-7), Yasiris Ortiz beat El Salvador’s Wang de Ying (8-11, 11-4, 11-5, 11-8). In a similar manner, Shelly Machado Fernandez overcame Emme Arias, also from El Salvador (13-11, 11-7, 11-7); Lizdainet Rodriguez prevailed against Guatemala’s Lucia Cordero (11-7, 11-9, 11-7).
Problems for prominent names in the initial stage of the Women’s Singles event; but it was their only defeat; second place in the group and progress to the main draw was thus achieved.
The Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles events continue on Monday 23rd July, attention now turns to the Men’s Doubles, Women’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles competitions.