JUVIC Pagunsan, Jay Bayron, Tony Lascuna and Elmer Salvador have confirmed participation in the P2.5 million ICTSI Orchard Golf Championship teeing off on Wednesday at the Orchard’s Palmer Course in Dasmariñas, Cavite.
Pagunsan, on a break from the Japan PGA Tour, will be looking to improve on his third place finish in the Philippine Golf Tour leg at Calatagan two weeks ago, hoping to log his first victory on the local circuit in two years.
The 2011 PGT Order of Merit champion participated in just six of the 15 local tournaments last year but had an impressive campaign in Japan where he finished runner-up in the Japan Open while placing in the top 10 in two other events.
Bayron, winner at Camp John Hay last month, and Sherwood leg champion Miguel Tabuena are out to bounce back from their joint 24th finish at Calatagan, which Lascuna ruled in convincing fashion.
Salvador, top money winner in 2010, is also expected to bounce back following a joint ninth finish in Baguio and a share of seventh in Calatagan.
Asian Tour campaigner Angelo Que is also joining the title hunt in the 72-hole championship offering a top prize of P450,000, while others tipped to crowd the favorites are Edward Reyes, Jhonnel Ababa, Charles Hong, Rufino Bayron, Mars Pucay, Japanese Toru Nakajima and Richard Sinfuego.
Meanwhile, the leading pros test the Palmer layout in Tuesday’s pro-am tournament where they will be grouped with officials and guests of the sponsoring ICTSI and the event’s chief backers Nike Golf, Empire Golf and Sports Shop, Mizuno, Titleist, Srixon, Foot Joy, Callaway, Pacsports, Custom Clubmakers, Cleveland Golf and Sharp.
Ferdie Aunzo, Michael Bibat, Jun Bernis, Cassius Casas, Marvin Dumandan, Mhark Fernando, Clyde Mondilla, Rey Pagunsan, Gerald Rosales, Carl Santos-Ocampo, Orlan Sumcad, and Dutch Guido Van der Valk are also seeing action in the event organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments Inc.
The ICTSI Orchard tilt is the second of six P2.5 million events lined up this year, with the Aboitiz Invitational, also an Asian Development Tour leg, set July 24-27 in Cebu. The ICTSI Classic at Mt. Malarayat will be played July 31 to Aug. 3, the ICTSI Manila Southwoods Championship is set Sept. 4 to 7, the ICTSI Riviera Classic is slated on Oct. 16 to 19, and the season-ending ICTSI Wack Wack Championship is scheduled Nov. 20 to 23.