Breakthrough victory for gritty Hong | Inquirer Sports

Breakthrough victory for gritty Hong

/ 02:27 AM September 08, 2012

Charles Hong tapped in for par on the first playoff hole to upend Richard Sinfuego yesterday and win the ICTSI Pueblo de Oro Championship—his first title as a professional—at the up-and-down layout in Cagayan de Oro.

After closing out regulation with a final round seven-under-par 65 to catch the veteran Sinfuego at 208, Hong missed the 18th green but nearly pitched in for a birdie as Sinfuego bogeyed after a wild approach.

Sinfuego started the day with a two-shot lead but settled for the playoff despite a 67.

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“This win means so much to my career,” said the 24-year-old Hong, who made heads turn with an opening 69 at the Philippine Open in Wack Wack in February.

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Hong actually trailed by four after the first hole with a bogey before draining four straight birdies from No. 5 to get back in the hunt.

Hong picked up P200,000, while Sinfuego settled for P120,000.

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Sinfuego had a two-stroke lead going into the last three holes, but Hong forged a playoff by closing out with three straight birdies.

Rufino Bayron, who won a leg in this circuit as an amateur, remained in search of his first pro win. He wound up third at 210, two shots behind, after closing out with a 68.

Chris delos Santos wound up fourth 212 after a similar 68.

Marvin Dumandan shared the next spot with Zannie Boy Gialon and Mark Fernando after a 69 for 214.

Gialon, the Sta. Barbara winner, fired a 68, while Fernando shot a 69. Musong R. Castillo

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TAGS: Charles Hong, Golf, ICTSI Pueblo de Oro Championship, Richard Sinfuego

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