MACTAN, a military-operated golf course in Cebu which no team in the 66th PAL Interclub field can claim to have familiarity with, will be the site of Day One action of the Men’s Regular championship starting on Wednesday.
Cebu Country Club (CCC), a traditional course which has been a landmark at the heart of this city, will host the second and final rounds as its club bets shoot to win the event for the second straight year.
Also a par-72 like CCC, Mactan will be the site for the third day, which could prove what CCC general manager Jeric Hechanova right when he said that it could be the turning point of the tournament.
While CCC has relatively sleek and well-manicured greens, Mactan has slow greens.
Fairways of both courses also vary greatly, with CCC being softer and Mactan a tad harder than usual, making approaches more difficult at the course near the international airport.
“That’s why we believe that the turning point (of the tournament) could be Mactan,” Hechanova had said in an earlier interview. “Anything can happen there and no team can claim local knowledge over there.”
Cebu CC will be shooting for back-to-back wins for the first time, bannered by basically the same team that ruled the event last year at the Apo Golf and Rancho Palos Verdes courses in Davao.
Alabang will parade a youthful side that has Filipino-German Keanu Jahns in the lineup, while Del Monte, the champion two years ago in Cagayan de Oro and Bukidnon, has also remained practically intact for this year’s event sponsored by the Department of Tourism, 105.1 Crossover, Solar Sports, Plantation Bay Resort and Spa, 92.3 FM Radyo 5, Araneta Coliseum and AXN. Major sponsors are Airbus, Manila Broadcasting Corporation, Philippine Broadcasting Network, People Asia, Radio Mindanao Network, Business Mirror and ABS-CBN The Filipino Channel.
One heavy contributor for Cebu CC last year who won’t be around this time is Gio Gandiongco, the cool and calculating teenager who is studying in the US on a golf scholarship.
Canlubang earlier won its third straight seniors division in the tournament backed by corporate sponsors Radisson Blu Hotel, Shangri-La Resort & Spa, Boeing, Inquirer Golf Magazine, Philippines Graphic and Manila Bulletin.