Thais rejoin LPGT as Orchard Invit’l unfolds

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The Ladies Philippine Golf Tour resumes today with the ICTSI Orchard Ladies Invitational with eight aces from Thailand boosting the compact cast at the Orchard Golf and Country Club’s Player course in Dasmariñas, Cavite.

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Nemittra Juntanaket, who placed third in the last LPGT leg at Luisita, and sister Nimmitta are re-joining the title hunt along with Alisara Wedchakama, Jaruporn Palakawongnaayuttawa, Numa Gulyanamitta, Pannapa Polnamin, Pattaraporn Mounchoo and Suchaya Tangkamolprasert.

Nemittra Juntanaket CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

All are out to duplicate fellow Thai Kanphanitnan Muangkhumsakul’s title romp at LPGT Splendido in the kickoff leg of the circuit where some of their compatriots honed their talent and skills and are now campaigning in the Symetra Tour and LPGA Tour.

Also for the first time, the country’s premier ladies tour, sponsored by ICTSI and organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc., will feature a South African campaigner in Madeleen Grosskopf, who has played in the Ladies European Tour and in Japan.

But focus will be on Euna Koh, who nipped local rookie pro Pauline del Rosario in the playoff to claim her maiden LPGT crown last April with the 18-year-old Korean hoping to flash top form against Del Rosario and Nemittra Juntanaket in the featured flight at 9:30 a.m.

Del Rosario is also raring to end a string of sorry setbacks, including a joint runner-up finish to Muangkhumsakul, with the former Philippine Ladies Open champion upbeat of her chances coming off a third place finish in Thailand last week.

Chihiro Ikeda, who ruled this event in wet condition last year, also hopes to churn out a superb game in all three days of the P1 million event serving as the fourth leg of the eight-stage circuit backed by backed by Custom Clubmakers, BDO, Meralco, Sharp, KZG, PLDT, Champion, Summit Mineral Water and K&G Golf.

Ikeda will start at 10 a.m. in the company of Lucy Landicho and Polnamin.

Others in the fold are Indonesian campaigner Jessica Lydia, Fil-Am and former leg winner Cristina Corpus and local bets Sarah Ababa, Lovelyn Guioguio and Anya Tanpinco.

Eagle Ace Superal, young sister of many-time LPGT winner and Symetra Tour campaigner Princess, is also in the list as spearhead of the seven amateurs seeing action in the 54-hole championship. The others are Alex Etter, Mariel Tee, Rev Alcantara, Sam Bruce, Kayla Nocum, and Japanese Kelly Marutani.

AFP

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