Cyna Rodriguez hopes to silence her rivals’ “Stop Cyna” battle cry with a strong start as the hottest player on the ladies circuit guns for a fourth straight win and fifth overall in the ICTSI Splendido Ladies Invitational beginning Wednesday at Splendido Taal Golf Club in Tagaytay.
Rodriguez has dominated the last three legs of the ICTSI Ladies Philippine Golf Tour with big starts and stronger finishes, beating Thai Amolkan Phalajivin by 11 at ICTSI John Hay and by 10 at ICTSI Mt. Malarayat. She trailed amateur Pauline del Rosario at ICTSI Eagle Ridge but unleashed a scorching finish – a bogey-free 67 spiked by an ace – to win by five and stretch her win run to three.
Unless the likes of second leg ICTSI Riviera Ladies Classic champion Jayvie Agojo, former SEA Games gold medalist Chihiro Ikeda and Phalajivin come up with a solid game throughout the 54-hole tournament, Rodriguez could be in for another victory in the circuit sponsored by International Container Terminal Services, Inc.
“Each event is a real test and like the rest, I practice hard to get the victory,” said Rodriguez, who also beat Agojo by five to rule the kickoff leg of the circuit organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc. at ICTSI Orchard last April.
Rodriguez drew an 8 a.m. flight with Eva Miñoza and Anya Tanpinco while Agojo and Ikeda are paired with Korean amateur Kim So Un in the last flight at 8:50 a.m.
Aside from Kim, a bunch of talented local amateurs is also in the fold, all eager to prove their worth and hopefully get a crack at spoiling Rodriguez’s bid for another championship in the eventbacked Nike, Pacsports, Custom Clubmakers and Sharp.
“To win, we have to match Cyna’s game up to the last hole. With the way she’s playing, we can’t afford to have a bad round. She’s tough to beat especially when she’s in the lead,” said Agojo.
Focus will also be on Yuka Saso and Sam Martinez, the Team ICTSI mainstays who are coming off victories in Malaysia and Kota Kinabalu, with the former joining Sylvia Torres and Sarah Ababa in the 7:50 a.m. flight and the latter grouped with Lina de Guzman and Korean Kwon Seo Yon.
Phalajivin, meanwhile, will start at 8:20 a.m. in the company of Lucy Landicho and another Korean amateur Euna Ko; Lovelynn Guioguio and Tracy Que are paired with another ICTSI team member Sofia Chabon, while amateurs Ping Jalares and Sam Green, and Mika Fortuna and Korean Hwang Min Jeong drew the first two flights at 7:30 a.m. and 7:40 a.m., respectively.