A couple of “firsts” will mark this year’s holding of one of the Philippine’s longest running junior tennis tournaments—the Gullas Tennis Cup.
For its 19th edition, the netfest will have a slight change to its title as this year it will now be dubbed as the 19th JRG Gullas Tennis Cup. JRG stands for Jose R. Gullas, the man who not only thought of having this event but who also continues to back this event to be held year after year for 19 years now.
Since 1995, this tournament have grown to become the third longest running junior tennis competition in the country behind the Mitsubishi Lancer International Junior Tennis Championships and the Andrada Cup.
Since both competitions are held in Manila, the Gullas Tennis Cup then is the longest running junior tennis tournament in Visayas and Mindanao.
This year will also be the first time that the tournament will be held this month—from August 21 to 24 as the event has always been held during the summer.
John Pages, one of the organizers of this tournament, explained during the press conference held at the Inday Pining Teatro II of the University of the Visayas, that this is to compensate for the few competitions held outside of summer.
“We usually hold this tournament during the summer but because there are so many tournaments happening during the summer, we felt this is a good opportunity for players to compete outside of summer,” Pages said.
It will also be the first time that this tournament will be held in indoor courts to avoid sudden weather changes that is often experienced in the later part of the year.
This year, the venues are at the Alta Vista Golf and Country Club in the hills of Pardo and the Citigreen Tennis Resort, the first to offer red clay courts in Cebu, in Punta Princesa. Both are southern barangays of Cebu City.
Sally Mae Siso, a multi-titled Gullas Tennis Cup player and now a member of the organizing committee, said that holding the tournament indoors would ensure that it will go smoothly as matches will be played rain or shine.
Siso said that she is grateful for the opportunity to still be part of the Gullas netfest as one of those helping out in its organization.
Siso, 20, was last year’s 21-Under Girls champion, but this year, she cannot defend her title as organizers have decided not to hold the category this year.
Coach Fritz Tabura, also one of the organizers, said this is because they are expecting an increase in the number of entries than last year and they only have four courts all in all—two each in Alta Vista and Citigreen, to hold the matches.
Last year, many were not able to join the competition because there was another competition held in Cagayan de Oro on the same date, said Tabura.
But this year, with the new schedule, Tabura said many players from Mindanao have already sent in feelers of joining the event. These players come from Cagayan de Oro, Tangub and Ozamiz. They also received feelers from neighboring Visayas areas such as Biliran and Tacloban.
There will be no limit to the number of participants, only in the number of entry that a participant can make, as they are limited to only two entries.
As of now, the tournament has about 50 single entries. Registration fee is pegged at P300. For further information, those interested can check out the tournament’s Facebook page Gullas Tennis Cup 2014 or call Jun Tabura at 09227138390 or Siso at 09239609117.
The tournament is a Group 2 sanctioned competition by the Philippine Tennis Association.