Orchard leg winner Angelo Que signed up for this week’s ICTSI Pueblo de Oro Championship, completing another star-studded cast in the P1 million event unfolding on Wednesday at the Pueblo de Oro Golf and Country Club course in Cagayan de Oro City.
Que, a former Philippine Open and three-time Asian Tour champion, routed the field at ICTSI Orchard in May with a four-day display of solid shotmaking but skipped the first two legs of the circuit’s Mindanao swing to honor a previous commitment.
But he made himself available for the final stop down south, guaranteeing another fierce battle for top honors in the seventh leg of the Philippine Golf Tour sponsored by the International Container Terminal Services, Inc.
With Frankie Miñoza in hot pursuit of a second straight championship after winning the ICTSI Del Monte last week and the likes of Tony Lascuña, Elmer Salvador and Jay Bayron out to redeem themselves from final round foldup, Que hopes come out strong from a two-week layoff to launch his bid for a follow-up to his Orchard romp.
Que closed out with a brilliant 10-under 62 to turn a four-stroke deficit into a four-shot victory over Lascuna at ICTSI Orchard in his first appearance on the local circuit since finishing joint sixth at ICTSI Wack Wack Championship in December.
Miñoza matched that stirring comeback by rallying from five strokes down to beat Lascuna and four others by five with a closing nine-under 63 at Del Monte.
But no one holds a distinct advantage at Pueblo, including surprise winner Charles Hong, who, however, is raring to redisplay the form that netted him his breakthrough victory last year.
Meanwhile, Que and the other leading players on the ICTSI PGT Order of Merit ranking tee off today (Tuesday) for the traditional pro-am tournament where they will be paired with amateur guests and officials of the event’s top backers, including Nike Golf, Empire Golf and Sports Shop, Mizuno, Titleist, Srixon, Foot Joy, Callaway, Pacsports, Custom Clubmakers, Cleveland Golf and Sharp.
The Pueblo de Oro leg caps the tour’s three-leg, three-week Mindanao swing of 54-hole tournaments with action shifting to Cebu on July 24 to 27 for the Aboitiz Invitational, a four-day championship offering a prize fund of P2.7 million.
The Aboitiz tilt also serves as a leg of the Asian Development Tour and will actually kickoff a two-leg Philippine swing of the ADT with Mt. Malarayat hosting the P2,5 million ICTSI Classic at Mount Malarayat on July 31 to August 3.