CAGAYAN DE ORO – Frankie Minoza outduelled Angelo Que in the final round, firing a bogey-free, five-under-par 67 to wrap up a second straight Philippine Golf Tour title in the P1 million Pueblo de Oro championship on Friday.
Coming off a victory at the ICTSI Del Monte leg last week where he shot a flawless nine-under 63 to rally from five down and win by five, Minoza was once again untouchable in the final round at Pueblo de Oro as he gunned down five birdies behind his solid shotmaking, superb iron play and steady putting.
The former Asian Tour No. 1 matched Que’s eagle-spiked 33 charge at front before cruising to victory with two more birdies in his homeward nine for a five-shot win over Elmer Salvador, who snatched runner-up honors at 203 with birdies on the last two holes for a 67.
With his earlier 67 and 64, the 52-year-old Minoza wound up with a 198 total and pocketed another P200,000 - his 18-under feat easily his best in a 54-hole tournament in years and one of the lowest on the five-year ICTSI Philippine Golf Tour.
The twin victories likewise boosted Minoza’s confidence as he heads to the Senior British Open at Royal Birkdale in England on July 25-28.
Que pressed his bid early on, spiking his frontside 33 with an eagle on No. 7 but that hardly rattled the veteran Minoza, who came through two more birdies and clutch par putts at the back to remain way ahead and preserve a bogey-less round.
In contrast, Que fumbled with a bogey on the par-3 11th against a birdie on the 16th and missed a couple of birdie putts from close range to settle for a 69. Que, the runaway winner at ICTSI Orchard last May, ended up third at 204 worth P90,000.
Orlan Sumcad, who matched Minoza’s 64 on Thursday, sustained his form and shot a 68 to finish joint fourth at 207 with Marvin Dumandan, who fired a 66. Rufino Bayron made a 71 and finished solo sixth at 208 while Dutch Guido Van der Valk rallied with the day’s best 65 after two 72s to salvage solo seventh at 209.
Tony Lascuña, who dominated the ICTSI Calatagan leg and had three runner-up finishes in the first six legs of the circuit organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc., carded a 70 and wound up tied for eighth at 211 with Benjie Magada, who matched par 72 while Jessie Balasabas, Mars Pucay and last year’s winner Charles Hong shared 10th place at 212 after 69, 70 and 72, respectively.
But it was an all-Minoza show the last two days with the two-time Philippine Open champion completing his first back-to-back title wins in a long, long while. It was actually his third halfway through the season after ruling The Country Club Invitational by beating brothers Rufino and Jay Bayron last February.
Minoza will miss local circuit’s next 72-hole championship – the Aboitiz Invitaitional in Cebu on July 24-27 - but may see action in the ICTSI Classic at Mt. Malarayat on July 31-August 3, both Asian Development Tour legs.
Gen Nagai shot a 73 for a 217 as he took the low amateur honors.