Top invitees make up tough PGTA Riviera cast
(The Philippine Star) - March 26, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Former Singapore amateur champ Choo Tze Huang and Thais Poom Saksansin and Tawan Phongpun head 13 other invitees to the ICTSI Riviera Golf Challenge, shooting for a top finish when the Philippine Golf Tour Asia event is unwrapped tomorrow in Silang, Cavite.

Canadian Lindsey Renolds, Ben Weir of the US, Taiwanese Wang Tsung Chieh, Yang Fei Hao and Lee Chao Hua, Teegan Moore and Dean Fourie of South Africa, Spain’s Pastor Marcos, Thai Kammalas Namuangruk and Gregory Foo and Marc Ong make up the crack list of guest players all primed up for the $100,000 championship serving as the penultimate leg of the second PGT Asia through 2018-19 put up by ICTSI.

Huang and former fellow national team mainstays Foo and Ong also hope to make the most of their return to local turf where they fought many a battle with the local aces during their amateur days.

The event also serves as prelude to the 101st Solaire Philippine Open on April 3-6 at The Country Club in Laguna, making this week’s 72-hole championship at the tight, hazard-laden Langer layout crucial for majority of the 120-player field heading to Asia’s oldest National Open at one of the country’s toughest courses.

Former Asia’s No. 1 and Japan PGA Tour campaigner Juvic Pagunsan has also signed up for both events organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc., backstopping the local challenge led by reigning PGT Order of Merit winner and defending champion Jobim Carlos.

Angelo Que, who tied for 25th in last Sunday’s Maybank Championship, is also in both the Riviera and Phl Open rosters, further toughening up the Filipinos’ bid in the twin events marking a busy schedule for the locals and foreign bidders alike.

But the Filipino aces, including Jhonnel Ababa, Tony Lascuña, Clyde Mondilla and Jay Bayron, expect a fierce challenge from the talent-laden foreign crew boosted by PGTA leg winners David Gleeson and Damien Jordan of Australia, PGT titlist Nicolas Paez of the US, Thai stalwarts Pasavee Lertvilai, Wisut Artjanawat and Nirun Sae-ueng, PGT winner Guido Van der Valk of the Netherlands, and Americans Brett Munson and Joshua Salah.

The 50 plus ties after 36 holes will advance to the last two rounds of the event which offers a top purse of $17,500.

Meanwhile, the leading pros will team up with guests and officials of the event’s chief backers ICTSI, Custom Clubmakers, Meralco, K&G Golf Apparel, BDO, Sharp, KZG, PLDT, Empire Golf and Sports and M.Y. Shokai Technology, Inc. in today’s traditional pro-am tournament.

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