Van Der Valk nips Mondilla by a shot
STA. ROSA, Laguna—Guido Van der Valk was rock-solid in the closing holes on Saturday, salvaging a par on the 72nd hole, which was all he needed to turn back Clyde Mondilla and wrap up the rich The Country Club Invitational title with a one-shot win at the well-manicured, windswept layout here.
The 40-year-old Van der Valk, a longtime Philippine resident, prevailed in a thrilling ending by canning a five-foot putt to save a 4 on the devilish 18th hole for a three-over-par 75 and a 295 tally, seven-over-par over the course now regarded as the longest and toughest in the land after a massive facelift done a couple of years back.
“That was stressful,” a relieved Van der Valk, a native of Lelystad in The Netherlands, said after copping just the third title of his career, all of them coming on Philippine soil. “Even without the wind, it was so stressful to play this course. Every hole, there is really something that makes it difficult. I was just lucky to hold on.”