Del Rosario, Arevalo launch LPGA Q-School Stage 2 bids

Jan Veran - Philstar.com
Del Rosario, Arevalo launch LPGA Q-School Stage 2 bids
Pauline del Rosario and Abby Arevalo

MANILA, Philippines – Pauline del Rosario and Abby Arevalo hope to produce the desired results off contrasting tee times as they kick off their drive for coveted slots into the Q-Series in the LPGA Q-School 2 Stage II, which reels off Thursday (Friday, Manila time) at the Plantation Golf and Country Club's Panther and Bobcat courses in Florida.

The Pinay hopefuls are but two of the 179 players out to come up with strong starts in such a cutthroat competition that offers just 45 plus ties slots to the final phase of the grueling elims leading to LPGA Tour cards next year.

The ICTSI-sponsored aces set off their respective bids at the hazard-laden Panther layout with sharp dog-leg holes with del Rosario drawing an 8 a.m. tee start with American Nannette Hill and amateur Brigitte Thibault from Canada on No. 10 and Arevalo bracing for a tougher challenge on a late start at 1:16 p.m. with American Lauren Cox and South African amateur Kaleigh Telfer on the first hole.

The duo will then join the rest of the other half of the field at the long and tricky Bobcat course in Friday’s second round.

Top 45 players and ties after 72 holes will advance to the Q-Series, a demanding 144-hole tournament, which will include those who had failed to keep their LPGA cards in 2020, with a cut after Week I. A minimum of the Top 45 and ties, based on their cumulative scores across the two-week competition, will earn the coveted LPGA cards for next year.

The Q-Series, the culmination of a grinding three-part elims, will be held from November 29 to December 12 at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail in Alabama.

Del Rosario and Arevalo gained berths in Stage II also via different routes with the former advancing with a runner-up effort in the Women’s All Pro Tour, where she won one tournament and posted six other Top 10 finishes, in Texas, which served as part of the Q-School and Arevalo hurdling Stage I in California.

The field features players from 37 countries with the US fielding in 71 followed by Australia and Sweden with 10 competitors each. They include Symetra Tour members ranked No. 1 to 125, the LPGA Tour members ranked outside the Top 150 and ties on the 2021 LPGA Points List, players ranked within the Top 400 in the Rolex Women's world golf rankings and the Top 5 in a collegiate ranking and world amateur standing.

That ensures a fierce, wild chase for the limited slots in the Q-Series although those who complete 72 holes but do not advance to final elims will receive Symetra Tour status (based on finish) for the 2022 season.

Meanwhile, Dottie Ardina and Bianca Pagdanganan, whose campaigns are also backed by the leading global port operator, gear up for the Q-Series as they seek to regain their LPGA cards after missing the Top 80 in the final cutoff this year in the recent Cognizant Founders Cup.

Yuka Saso is the only Filipina assured of an LPGA stint the next four years the Fil-Japanese ace received a five-year membership status following her historic major title exploit in the US Women’s Open last June.

The 20-year-old world No. 5 is slated to wrap up her record season with stints in the TOTO Japan Classic, an LPGA of Japan Tour championship, on Nov. 4-7 before heading back to the US for the last two LPGA events in the season about to end — the Pelican Women’s Championship and the CME Group Tour Championship, both in Florida, also next month.

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