Plucksataporn paces Piccio, Rodriguez by two in ICTSI champion tour
Thai Titiya Plucksataporn settled for a one-under-par 71 and a two-stroke lead over local pursuers Mia Picco and Cyna Rodriguez in the second round of the $75,000 ICTSI Champion Tour at Splendido in Tagaytay City.
Ready to break away, Plucksataporn wavered with two bogeys in the last three holes for a 36-hole total of 143, allowing Piccio, who shot a 75, and Rodriguez, who matched par 72, to stay within sight at 145 going into Friday’s final round.
Also in strong contention at 146 are Thai Kanphanitnan Muangkhumsakul, the first-round leader who skied to a 77, and Taiwanese Lee Hsin (72), Yeh Hsin-ning (75) and Hung Jo-jua (73).
Despite her faltering finish, Plucksataporn, a Ladies European Tour campaigner, remained upbeat on her bid for the top $15,000 purse of the kickoff leg of this year’s ICTSI Ladies Philippine Golf Tour presented by Champion.
“My putting and irons were simply good,” said the 24-year-old Plucksataporn, a Queen Sirikit Cup silver medalist from Bangkok. “If I can sustain my game or play even tomorrow (today), I have good chances for the title.”
Muangkhumsakul was also hobbled by a shaky finish of three bogeys in the last five holes, while Rodriguez rebounded from back-to-back bogeys from No. 14 with a birdie on the 17th to stay in the title hunt in the event organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc.
Lodged at 147, four shots off the pace, were local amateur Yuka Saso, who fired a 75, Korean Kang Ji-won (72) and Taiwanese amateur Hou Yu-chiang (72).
Thais Punpaka Phuntumabamrung ang Pimpadsorn Sangkagaro tallied 148s after a 73 and 75, respectively.
Rookie pro Pauline del Rosario tumbled with a 78 and slipped to joint 13th with Taiwan’s Chen Yu-ju (75) and amateur Hou Yu-sang (73) and Thai Narisara Kerdrit (73) at 149. —ROY LUARCA