Japanese Toru Nakajima, seeking to regain his Philippine Golf Tour card, fired a one-under and 71 to post a one-stroke lead over Koreans Lee Seongki and Kim Yoo Han at the start of the PGT Qualifying School (foreign) at Eagle Ridge’s Aoki course in Cavite.
The 31-year-old Nakajima, who nipped Jay Bayron and Cassius Casas in a playoff to win the season-ending ICTSI Wack Wack Championship in 2013 but missed the circuit last year, rallied with three birdies at the back to cap his big comeback from a 38 start as he paced the big 66-player field chasing slots for this year’s ICTSI PGT.
Lee also closed out with 33 to salvage a 72 in a tie with Kim, who had 36-36, while Koreans Seok Jun Min, Seo Hyeong dae and Park Jun Hyeok all carded 73s.
Park looked headed for a big start with a 34 but dropped four strokes in the first four holes at the back, including a double-bogey mishap on No. 11 to finish with a 73.
Amateur Jung Hoe Yeop, also of Korea, shot a 74 for joint seventh with compatriot Lee Sangun while Toru Morita fought back with a 35 for a 75 in a tie with fellow Japanese Yuta Sudo, and Koreans Lyu Hyung Suk and Cho Phil Kyu.
Japan’s Yuto Katsuragawa, the top amateur in last year’s ICTSI PGT, made a 76 and stayed within the cutoff line along with compatriot Yuki Kishida, and Koreans Kim Jung Hun and Kim Chang Hoi.