James Buytrago and Jude Garcia turned back Sajid Ismail and Adam Naseem of Maldives, 21-11, 21-12, to book a Round of 16 seat in the Hangzhou Asian Games men’s beach volleyball competition Friday morning at the Ningbo Banbianshan Beach Volleyball Centre.
Coming off a one-day rest following a Pool A debut setback last Wednesday, the Filipino pair did not hold back in smothering the listless Maldives bets to move on to the knockout stage slated to begin on Sunday.
They joined opening day tormentors Jiaxin Wu and Abuduhalikejiang Mutalipu, who gave the Philippines a rude welcome in its Asiad return since the 2006 Doha edition, in the next round.
The pair became the third Philippine entry to advance after the women’s duo of Dij Rodriguez and Gene Eslapor and the Khylem Progella-Grydelle Matibag tandem secured their respective seats in the Round of 16.
Meanwhile, the duo of Jaron Requinton and Ranran Abdilla are playing Qataris Cherif Younousse Samba and Ahmed Tijan Janko as of press time in Pool B with the survivor marching into the next phase.
In women’s play, Rodriguez and Eslapor primed up for the knockout battle with a straight-set, 21-10, 21-17, whipping of Sri Lanka’s Bandara Magadegara Deepika and Madushan Kumbure Gedara Chathurika.
The Pinay partners closed Pool A with a 3-1 win-loss card behind unbeaten defending champion China.
Progella and Matibag are clashing with the Thai duo of Taravadee Naraphornrapat and Kongphopsarutawadee in the final game of Pool B as of press time.