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Junior PGT Series race heats up


Bidders in the premier age group category, both in boys’ and girls’ divisions, seek to fortify their respective bids in the national finals of the Junior JPGT Series in an 18-hole stroke play competition Sunday at Splendido Taal Golf Club in Tagaytay.

Miguel Espartero and Zachary Villaroman topbill the boys’ 15-18 cast while Angelica Bañez and Lia Dy Duque banner the distaff side, all going for no-holds-barred approaches to the crucial Round 3 of the series for ranking points needed to qualify for next month’s national finals of the pioneering circuit organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments Inc.

Raring to mix it up with Espartero and Villaroman are Von Raiden Tablac, Mark Kobayashi, David Serdenia, Eron Sung, An Seongmin, Zion Zubia, Santino Pineda, Sean Baltazar and Rafael Mañaol.

Joining Bañez and Duque in the hunt in the two-format talent-search series, the other being the drive, chip and putt skills challenge, are Casey Frankum and Korean Lee Ji Won, a campaigner on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour.

Also on tap in the third-to-last leg series culminating in the grand finals at The Country Club next month is Round 4 of the boys’ 13-14 age group, also set over the 18-hole format, with Tristan Padilla, Alex Crisostomo and Chaz Limketkai tipped to contend for top honors.

Likewise in the fold are Santi Asuncion, Bien Fajardo, Abram Lim, Stefano Tami, Carlos Taruc, Sebastian Saycon, Felix Saludar, Ramon Fabie, Gabriel Handog and Harry Sales.

The year-long nationwide series, put up by long-time golf patron ICTSI to boost junior golf and discover talents, particularly in the countryside, held the JPGT VisMin swing two weeks ago with Zuri Bagaloyos and Jared Saban (9-10); Johanna Uyking and Ralph Batican (11-12); Isabella Tabanas and Clement Ordeneza (13-14); and Alethea Gaccion and Zeus Sara (15-18) leading 32 other qualifiers to the national finals.

Pradera Verde in Lubao, Pampanga will host Round 4 of the boys’ and girls’ 15-18 and Round 5 of the boys’ 13-14 plays, both under the 18-hole stroke play format on 24  September, with the series winding up at Eagle Ridge on 1 October for Round 5 of the boys’ and girls’ 15-18 under the DCP (drive-chip-putt) format.

The Top 5 in each division will dispute the various titles in the national finals on 3 October at the posh TCC layout in Laguna.

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