NEWLY-crowned national junior champion Gen Nagai, former champion Rupert Zaragosa, club bets King Stehmeier and Raymund Sangil and other top amateurs battle for honors in the 2014 Philippine Amateur Match Play championship next week at Orchard Golf and Country Club in Dasmarinas, Cavite.
Cebu-based Japanese player Nagai looks to duplicate what Zaragosa did three years ago — hold the men’s and boys’ national titles at the same time.
Zaragosa has recovered from a wrist injury that forced him to withdraw after 24 holes of the Junior Amateur championship last week, while also among the favorites in the event teeing off April 21 are Stehmeier and Sangil, members of the Orchard squad that ruled the recent Interclub tournament.
Orchard has rejoined the National Golf Association of the Philippines and its Palmer layout will be a tough challenge for the field, which will be limited to the first 80 players for the men and 40 for the women.
“We are very happy to join the NGAP, and we will make sure that the course is ready for this huge championship,” said Orchard president Conrad Benitez.
The first two days will be stroke play to determine rankings with only the top 32 advancing in the men’s division and the top 16 marching on in the women’s side.
“We welcome the Orchard to the NGAP family and we look forward to hosting more events here in the future,” said NGAP president Tommy Manotoc, under whose watch several exclusive clubs have returned to the NGAP fold starting last year.
Philippine team member Justin Quiban and Shin Ye-sub, a Korean scratch player from Mimosa, are also among the players to watch.
Registration for the event presented by the MVP Sports Foundation as part of the PLDT Group Amateur Tour ends Wednesday. The NGAP can be contacted at 027065926, 023428719, 029250022, 09175177259 or firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.