Gialon feels East course bite, shares lead with 2 others
The fabled East course bared its nasty side Friday, with Zanieboy Gialon barely clinging to a share of top spot with Thai Pasavee Lertvilai and Justin Quiban in the rain-hit third round of the ICTSI Wack Wack Championship.
With the wind blowing and the grounds wet, Gialon limped home with a five-over-par 77 that withstood the challenge of Lertvilai and Quiban, who could do no better than a 73 and 74, respectively.
They settled for a one-under 215 total, enabling Tony Lascuna to inch closer with a 73 and a 216 aggregate that guaranteed a tight title fight for the $17,500 top purse in the event organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournament, Inc. as the fourth leg of PGT Asia.
Lascuna, a multiple Philippine Golf Tour Order of Merit winner, could have forged a four-way tie for the lead but bogeyed the par-4 No. 18 for the second straight day.
Still, Lascuna liked his chances.
“No lead is safe here at WW East and it’s going to be anybody’s race tomorrow (today),” said Lascuña.
American Nicolas Paez carded a 71, one of the round’s three best scores, to force another three-way tie for fifth at 218, just three shots off the pace, with James Ryan Lam and unheralded Rolando Marabe Jr. tallying 72 and 73, respectively.
Australian Marcus Both bogeyed four of the last seven holes and tumbled to a 74 and a 219 total, one shot ahead of Michael Bibat, who shot a 7 and Jobim Carlos, who submitted a 75.
Teeing off at the backside, Gialon went on attack mode after birdieing the first two holes, only to stumble with two double-bogeys and four bogeys at the back, needing to birdie the last from five feet to tie Letrvilai and Quiban, who recovered from a double bogey on No. 13 with three straight birdies from No. 14.
“I should’ve played it safe. I thought I could sustain my hot start but I lost my rhythm and hit some bad shots,” said Gialon.
“I struggled but I was able to keep it together in the closing holes,” said Quiban, who is seeing a breakthrough victory after losing steam in last week’s Manila Masters at Southwoods where he wound up joint fifth.
According to Lascuna, the last round will be a “survival of the fittest” with each shot crucial.