Pueblo Golf hosts JGFP’s second Mindanao leg

Winners hold their trophies during the first edition of the Junior Golf Foundation of the Philippines (JGFP) Mindanao leg held at Apo Golf and Country Club in Davao City. They were joined by, back row from left, John Paul Tamayo of Brittannika Golf Course, Steve Gan of Islandwide Distribution Corp., John Gaisano, JGFP president Oliver Gan and former PBA star and golf enthusiast Vince Hizon.

CAGAYAN DE ORO – A total of 150 golfers will tee off when the second part of the Mindanao leg of the Junior Golf Foundation of the Philippines (JGFP) starts with the Pueblo de Oro Junior Open on Saturday, Jan. 28, at the Pueblo de Oro Golf and Country here.

The event, which comes after a successful tournament in Davao City at Apo Golf last Jan. 8, hopes to continue the same vision of the JGFP, and that is to discover new talents from the grassroots level, particularly in the Mindanao region.

The region has produced a number of successful world caliber golfers over the years, which include Frankie Minoza, Tony Lascuna, Cassius Casas, Elmer Salvador, Elmer Saban, Jay Bayron, Jhonnel Ababa, and rising star Edison Tabalin.

JGFP president Oliver Gan said the number of participants only proved that the interest in junior golf is very high as young participants are excited to showcase their talent in the two-day meet.

“We are overwhelmed with the turnout,” said Gan, a former golf consultant of the Games and Amusement Board (GAB).

“This goes to show that young golfers are excited to play – especially golfers from the region. That means Mindanao is really a hotbed for talented young golfers,” added Gan, who expressed his gratitude to Pueblo Golf chairman Ronnie Canlas and general manager Gilby Velez for making the event possible.

The event, supported by John Gaisano, Gaisano Malls, Islandwide Distribution Corp. and Pueblo Golf, will have boys and girls competitions in the 6-under, 7-8 years-old, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14 and 15-18. A special division will also be played for the 19-21 golfers.

Participants in the 12 and above bracket will also earn ranking points from the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR). Under WAGR, they already started Friday for the required three-day meet.

Previous champions from the Davao leg will likewise see action here, including Manila-based golfers Nicole and Stephanie Gan, and Lucas de Guzman, Mindanao’s Jared Saban, Athena Batican, Alonzo Retuerto, Brittany Pauline Tamayo, Zerto Plete, Cody John Langamin, Althea Paige Gaccion, Aldrein Gialon and John Canlas.