DAVAO City’s golf prodigy Alessandra Christine Zozobrado-Nagayo begins her journey to the big league as she tees off on Wednesday in the 54th Philippine Ladies Open at the scenic Tagaytay Midlands course.
Nagayo, who turned 12 just last December, makes her Philippine Open debut against a crack field led by veteran inernationalist Princess Superal, Pauline de Rosario and Jayvee Agojo as well as top foreign entries.
Organized by the Women's Golf Association of the Philippines (WGAP), the Open is the biggest women’s golf event in the country.
“Ella is not expecting so much. It is just for exposure for her to experience playing at this level,” said her mother, Councilor Rachelle Zozobrado-Nagayo.
Nagayo is coming off two international stints last year, finishing a strong fourth in the 2015 Veritas Junior World Championship in Pasadena, California and tied for 86th in the US Kids World Championships in Pinehurst, North Carolina.
Nagayo practiced on Tuesday at the Midlands, a par-72 layout with a distance of 6,021 yards. Nagayo will be teeing off on Flight 7 at 8 30 a.m. with Aiza Moran, Eden Hernandez and Felicia Macala.
Last year, Thai Pimnipa Panthong fended off del Rosario’s late charge with clutch putts then nipped compatriot Kanyalak Preedasutthijit by one with a closing one-over 73 to rule the tournament on her first try at Wack Wack’s West course.