WITH an explosive tee shot and a fine touch around the greens, Bianca Pagdanganan is being billed as revolutionary.
“Not only will she be collecting hardware by the shelf-full, but this 22-year-old from the Philippines could change the way young girls swing the club and learn the game,” New York Times bestselling author and LPGA managing editor Steve Eubanks wrote on Saturday (Sunday, Manila time).
NCAA golf champion with the University of Arizona, Pagdanganan is again within striking distance, in solo second entering the final round in Georgia.
She placed in the top 10 in her first appearance in an LPGA major, finishing joint ninth at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, proving she has a well-balanced game after initially being lauded for her length off the tee.
“She is not a fluke. She is not a freak. She is the future. LPGA Tour rookie Bianca Pagdanganan may or may not win the Drive On Championship - Reynolds Lake Oconee this week … But Bianca’s time is coming,” Eubanks added.
While a good number of players find LPGA success managing their way around the courses, Pagdaganan has the power and deft touch to go pin-hunting with a driver-wedge attack — much like the big guys on the PGA Tour — with Eubanks noting that the Filipina can hit the ball “with a trajectory and spin that would make Rory McIlroy sit up straight.”
Former Women’s British Open champion Karen Stupples is also impressed, noting that while there are others that have the driving distance, not a lot are willing to take the risks.
“She could definitely be a revolutionary figure in the women’s game,” Karen Stupples was quoted by Eubanks as saying.
“She’s got the personality. But she is also the only woman in the game with that kind of power (in her golf swing) who isn’t afraid to use it. Other players could hit it as far as she does, but they’re afraid to do it. They’ve been told that they need to pull back and keep it in play or hit it to a number. (Bianca) doesn’t care about any of that. She picks a line and rips at it.”