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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Confident Ababa faces Palos Verdes challenge

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DAVAO—Aiming to build on her new-found momentum on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour, Sarah Ababa is gearing up for another strong showing in the ICTSI Palos Verdes Championship, which gets underway tomorrow (Tuesday, March 19) here.

Fresh from her come-from-behind victory at Apo, Ababa is brimming with confidence as she prepares to face the same field she triumphed over at home. However, her main challenge lies in navigating the unfamiliar terrain at Rancho Palos Verdes Golf and Country Club, where she hasn’t played in over two decades.

“Despite being from Davao, I haven’t played at Palos Verdes in 20 years,” said Ababa. “But I’ll be approaching the tournament with the same determination and strategic mindset.”

Boosting her confidence is the presence of her father, Edgar, as her caddie. While he could’ve competed in the men’s event last week, he chose to support his daughter, providing invaluable guidance on the path to victory.

It was Ababa’s first win since thwarting Chihiro Ikeda and Hwang Min-jeong at Sherwood Hills in 2015.

With a different course layout at Palos Verdes, the Davaoeña is prepared for a tough challenge from the field, including contenders Mafy Singson and Mikha Fortuna, who are eager for redemption after both came up short in their respective title bids in the kickoff leg of this year’s 10-leg circuit sponsored by ICTSI.

Singson, who has won two LPGT titles as an amateur, faced setbacks early in the final round, blew a four-stroke lead and failed to mount a backside rally, settling for second place in her pro debut.

Fortuna is likewise determined to make up for her third place finish, along with Harmie Constantino, Laurea Duque, Miya Legaspi, Rev Alcantara, Florence Bisera, Marvi Monsalve, Pamela Mariano and Ikeda, among others.

Like Singson, former national teammate Lois Kaye Go aims for a big bounce-back from her 10th place finish in her first pro tournament, while Velinda Castil, whose strong joint runner-up effort in Del Monte last year prompted her to move to the pro ranks, vows to do better after missing the cut.

As Ababa primes up for the 54-hole championship, organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc. and supported by PGTI official apparel Kampfortis Golf, she remains focused on maintaining her winning momentum and securing another successful outing this week.

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