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Despite heavy clouds, Fil-Am golf gears for opening

BAGUIO CITY - Despite the heavy clouds, some 700 players are ready to swing their golf clubs starting Wednesday after the ceremonial tee off of the 70th edition of the Fil-Am Invitational Golf Tournament at both the Camp John Hay (CJH) and the Baguio Country Club (BCC) golf courses.

Both co-chair Tim Allen and Anthony de Leon of CJH and BCC, respectively, raised their champagne glass as they hope for better weather the next days with typhoon Tisoy making its slow exit.

“Luckily the typhoon did not hit us directly but then we pray for the safety of those who were directly in its path,” said de Leon just before hitting the ceremonial tee at the CJH course on Tuesday.

“So far this is the biggest Fil-Am with 80 teams in our waiting list,” he added.

While games are about to start in the super senior, senior and lower flights of the regular competitions, de Leon said the organizing committee is looking at the 71st staging next year when it will become a three-week event.

“We are looking forward to the 71st staging when we will have three weeks of exciting competitions,” said de Leon.

The three-day practice rounds started Sunday where the team captain's met to finalize their respective line ups in the five to play four to count tournament that uses the Modified PAL format.

The practice rounds ended Wednesday as the five contenders for the super senior's competition gear up for the start of play and where former Baguio Mayor Mauricio Domogan led John Hay defends his title.

Domogan, also a former three-term congressman, will defend the over-all individual super senior crown.

The super senior's division was first played last year in preparation for this year’s 70th year. Also to be played the first week are the senior's division that is for 55 years up and the lower flights of the regular division.

Megafiber returns to defend the crown it snatched in the last day of play against then-defending champion Luisita Golf.

Also out to foil Megafiber are two former champions, inaugural winner Manila Southwoods and former three-time champion Camp John Hay.

On December 10, it will be the start of the three-day practice rounds of the regular divisions.

Games will begin on December 14 and will be played until the 18th.

Manila Southwoods is defending both the premiere Fil and Am Championships of the regular division. (PNA)

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