A Pacific League boys’ tennis singles champion will come from Burbank High for a third consecutive year.
It will come with an added twist and take an extra day to decide who will be bestowed with the honor between junior Adam Ridaoui and freshman Amrith Kodumuri.
Ridaoui, the reigning two-time league winner, and Kodumuri won their respective semifinal matches at the league tournament Wednesday at Burroughs High.
The top-seeded Ridaoui recorded a 6-0, 6-0, semifinal victory against No. 4 Will Wu of Arcadia, while No. 2 Kodumuri needed more than two hours to earn a 6-2, 4-6, 13-11 semifinal win versus No. 3 Luke Feng of Arcadia.
The league coaches agreed to let Risaoui and Kodumuri compete for the league title on Thursday at Burbank High. By advancing to the league final, the duo clinched berths to participate in the CIF Individual Tournament in May.
Ridaoui had little trouble with Wu, who handed Ridaoui his lone league defeat earlier in the season.
“I came out and was able to do a lot of things well and it worked out in the end,” Ridaoui said. “I knew I couldn’t give in and wanted to make up for losing earlier.
“It will be great to go up against Amrith. He’s a very consistent player and it will be an honor to play him.”
Kodumuri and Feng participated in the most dramatic match Wednesday that went to a tiebreaker. The tandem was tied at 9 before Kodumuri took a 10-9 lead. Feng tied it at 10 and 11 before Kodumuri captured the next two points to clinch the victory.
“I felt kind of calm on the court, but I didn’t like the atmosphere because so many people were yelling,” said an exhausted Kodumuri, who slipped and fell during the second set while attempting to return a shot. “I just knew that I needed to convert on my shots, especially in the tiebreaker. It will be great to play against Adam.”
Veteran Burbank coach Loi Phan praised both of his players.
“They went out there and did what they had to do,” said Phan, whose team took second in league behind Arcadia and will take part in the CIF Southern Section playoffs in May. “Adam stay focused the whole time in his match and Amrith battled it out with Feng and both he and Feng were clutch.
“Amrith took that fall in the second set and he played for a very long time. It’s best to give Adam and Amrith an extra day. There’s lots of incentive for both of them.”
In doubles action, the No. 3 duo of Bryce Wong and James Liu of Arcadia notched a 6-1, 6-2 victory against No. 1 Aaron Hung and Stanley Hsu of Arcadia to win the championship.
Wong and Liu picked up a 6-3, 6-4 semifinal win versus No. 2 Adonis Bosco and Yash Desai of Burbank, Hong and Hsu won, 7-5, 6-2, against No. 4 David Kim and Ben Yeom of Crescenta Valley in their semifinal matchup.
Wong and Liu and Hong and Hsu earned spots in the CIF Individual Tournament as well. In the third-place doubles match, Kim and Yeom earned a 6-4, 6-3 win against Bosco and Desai.
The third-place singles match between Feng and Wu will be held Thursday at Arcadia.