Dij Rodriguez and Gene Eslapor saw their 19th Asian Games journey in China come to an end after absorbing a 16-21, 11-21, loss to fancied Japan in the quarterfinal of women’s beach volleyball Monday night at the Ningbo Banbianshan Beach Volleyball Centre.
The Filipina tandem poured their hearts out in the knockout match against Olympian Miki Ishii and Sayaka Mizoe but was found wanting amid the might of the seasoned Japanese.
Their fall spelled the end of the Philippines’ return to the competition since its last participation in 2006 in Doha.
Rodriguez and Esplapor were the lone tandem that made it as far as the quarterfinal after the other women’s pair of Khylem Progella and Grydelle Matibag got eliminated in the Round of 16 last Sunday.
The men’s duo of James Buytrago and Jude Garcia fell short in the Round of 16 while Ranran Abdilla and Jaron Requinton failed to get past the group stage.