Twice foiled in her breakthrough bid, Chanelle Avaricio hopes to finally nail it this time – sans her two-time tormentor – as she top-bills the ICTSI Aoki Classic at Eagle Ridge, which unwraps Wednesday in Gen. Trias, Cavite.
The Alabama State U alumna barely missed scoring her first win at Sherwood Hills, falling short by one to Princess Superal, then losing by three to her again at Eagle Ridge-Norman, both last July, before play on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour was suspended due to the spike of coronavirus cases in NCR Plus.
But those setbacks are expected to strengthen not just her game but the mental side as well as she resumes her pursuit of the elusive crown at the third restart of the country’s premier ladies circuit put up by ICTSI.
Strategy and decision-making will indeed be the key points as the field tackles the challenging Aoki course kept in championship form year-round with Avaricio facing a set of rivals also all geared up for the 54-hole championship offering a total prize fund of P750,000.
That includes Harmie Constantino, who actually marked her pro debut with a two-shot victory over Superal at Aoki last March although the former national amateur champion slowed down in her next two outings, ending up third behind Superal and Avaricio at Sherwood and winding up fourth at Eagle Ridge-Norman.
But with Superal out of the picture to pursue her own campaign in Japan, Avaricio and Constantino look forward to a title clash next week with the likes of Chihiro Ikeda, Daniella Uy, Cyna Rodriguez, Sunshine Baraquiel and Marvi Monsalve also hopeful of coming out on top on Friday.
A host of others are also raring to spring a surprise, including Sarah Ababa, Lovelyn Guioguio, Apple Fudolin, Pamela Mariano, Eva Miñoza, Florence Bisera, Majorie Palumbarit and Sheryl Villacencio, in a title chase that could go down to the last shot or putt.
The organizing Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc., meanwhile, is enforcing strict safety measures to guarantee the health and safety of all those involved as per the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) guidelines the way it conducted its previous successful bubble tournaments.
The touring ladies will next test the tricky Highlands course in the ICTSI Tagaytay Highlands Challenge on Nov. 9-11 with Gretchen Villacencio joining the hunt after skipping the Eagle Ridge sortie for medical reasons.
Meantime, two more tournaments are being readied for the touring ladies on Nov. 23-26 and Nov. 30-Dec. 3 at the Riviera Golf and Country Club in SIlang, Cavite, which hosted the first restart of the circuit after an eight-month hiatus late last year.