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Pagunsan shoots 70

Juvic Pagunsan birdied two of the last five holes to shoot a one-under par 70 in the Vantelin Tokai Classic at the Miyoshi Country Club’s West course in Japan Thursday.

The 44-year-old Filipino ace, who tied for fifth in Panasonic Open last week, posted his fifth-straight sub-par round, five shots behind clubhouse leader Genki Okada of Japan.

Pagunsan made his first bogey on the fourth hole which he three-putted and dropped another shot on 6 following a birdie on 5.

He started his inward trip with a birdie on 10 and bogeyed 13 before one-putting the last five holes that yielded birdies on 14 and 16.

Justin de los Santos, the other Filipino in the field, struggled with a 75, his round marred by two bogeys and two double bogeys against two birdies.

Okada had a bogey-free round of six birdies to take the provisionary lead.

Meanwhile, Miguel Tabuena and Angelo Que posted sub-par rounds to get in the mix at the start of the Mercuries Taiwan Masters at the Taiwan Golf and Country Club Thursday.

Tabuena shot a three-under-par 69 despite a late double bogey while Que carded a 70 to launch their separate bids in the $1-million event, one of Asia’s premier events since 2004.

With half of the field still finishing their rounds, Thais Donlaphatchai Niyomchon and Sarit Suwannarut shared the clubhouse lead with 67s.

For a while, Tabuena sat on top of the leaderboard following an eagle on the par-5 sixth hole and birdies on 11, 13 and 14.

But his momentum was broken when he dropped two shots on the par-4 16th hole. He closed with back-to-back pars.

Que, on the other hand, birdied two of the first three holes and mixed three birdies with the same number of bogeys the rest of the way.

Both Donlaphatchai and Sarit collected six birdies against a bogey to get on top of the leaderboard.

One shot behind were Daniel Fox and Chan Shih-chang.

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