DAVAO CITY: Manila Southwoods has assembled the country’s top young amateurs and looms as the team to beat in the 70th Philippine Airlines Senior Interclub golf team championships which get going Wednesday.
Even without Justin Quiban who has turned pro, Southwoods has enough firepower to make it three in a row.
“Let’s just say we’re confident with what we have right now,” said Southwoods captain Jerome Delariarte. “Our team is less experienced compared to last year’s squad, but certainly is more talented.”
The team has only four holdovers led by Junjun Plana, the most senior member at 49 years old. The only other adult in the squad is 22-year-old Jama Reyes.
The rest of the squad are teenagers, led by in-form Yuto Katsugawara who is 18.
The others are Kristoffer Arevalo, 17; Liam Cully, 17; Aira Alido, 16; Aidric Chan, 15; Jet Sajulga, 15; Carl Corpuz, 14; and Tom Kim, 14.
Aside from Plana, the other holdovers are Katsugarawa, Alido and Sajulga.
Last year, Southwoods routed Canlubang in the final round to score a 10-point win at the Mimosa Golf Club in Clark, Angeles.
Canlubang, led by Rupert Zaragosa, is again tipped to give Southwoods a run for its money as well as Luisita and Del Monte.
The 70th PAL Interclub Platinum sponsors are Mareco Broadcasting Network, A&E Networks Asia, RMN Networks, The Manila Standard, Fox Networks Group, Rolls-Royce, TV5, MasterCard, TFC and Business Mirror.
Major sponsors include Asian Air Safari, Airbus, Primax Broadcasting Network and Sabre Airline Solutions while Corporate sponsors are Baron Travel Corporation, Boeing, MX3, GE Aviation, Bombo Radyo Philippines, Asia Brewery, Tanduay Distillers, Sabre Airline Solutions and Tourism Promotions Board.
The donors are Shangri-La at The Fort, Trinity Insurance and Eton Properties.
A total of 80 teams are entered in the four-day, five-division event which ends on Saturday. They will play at the Apo Golf and Country Club and Rancho Palos Verde.