ABE Avena fired a two-under 70 for a four-stroke lead in the Seniors Open over Rolly Viray after the first round of the 2016 Philippine Senior and Mid-Amateur Open Championship at Summit Point Golf and Country Club on Wednesday in Lipa City, Batangas.
Avena had three birdies and three bogeys on the front nine but hit birdies on No. 12 and 13 to take charge in the centerpiece division.
Viray hit three birdies but fumbled with five bogeys to card a 74, while Benjie Sumulong faltered had a 76 at the start of the 54-hole tournament, a qualifier for the 2015 Asian Pacific Golf Confederation national seniors squad.
Alan Alegre shot a 78, Dave Hernandez and Jose Mari Hechanova carded 79s, Daniel Samaniego had an 81, Japan’s Sengyo Kato and Rudy Amata fired 82s.
Richard Salcedo took charge in the Mid-Am category with a 77, one stroke ahead of Gerald Katigbak, while Takuya Kawamura of Japan put himself in contention with an 80.
Rupert Zaragosa shot a 70 for a five-shot lead over Jolo Magcalayo in the invitational Elite Amateur Open.
The veteran internationalist, a national champion and junior titlist gunned down three birdies, suffering his lone bogey on No. 15, to dominate the first round action of the event where the top two will also be nominated for the Vietnam Amateur Open set June 23 to 26 at the Sacom Golf Resort.
Kristoffer Arevalo stayed in the hunt for the second berth with a 76 along with Luigi Guerrero, who had a 77. Jan de Claro shot a 78 and Earl Morley shot a 79 in the PLDT Group National Amateur Tour event sponsored by MVP Sports Foundation, organized by the National Golf Association of the Philippines, and backed by the Philippine Sports Commission.