Nagayo scores huge comeback to lift team’s fading hopes

Eleven year old Dabawenyo golf prodigy Daniel Nagayo’s walk towards the final green wasn’t exactly the most encouraging.

Playing in the last flight against a hometown kid five years older and enjoying tremendous course familiarity at Gardiners Run Golf Club, Nagayo’s look did not reflect a window of opportunity.

His Churchill Waverley teammates, who were all waiting at the 18th hole for the wire-to-wire battle between their best bets in this Golf Victoria Junior Pennant Round 3 on Sunday at Melbourne, had all the reason to worry. Churchill Waverley Primary was down 2-3 against Chirnside and Eastern in the matchplay and  Nagayo had just come off a wayward drive and a missed approach.

The scorecard was even at that stage. Thanks to Nagayo’s late run starting on the 13th after dropping to as much as three down in the 12th.

This is enemy ground and Nagayo could easily melt under the loud cheers for his opponent Jarrod Addison before a homecourse crowd.

But the son of former Davao City councilor Rachel Zozobrado-Nagayo and businessman Danny Nagayo, was just hiding his inner beast, guarding it to the best he can so he could unleash his last roar.

After Addison three-putted for a fat seven on the par 4 18th, all eyes were on Nagayo to sink his second putt and win the match. With nerves of steel, he calmly sank his second putt for a double bogey but still enough to clinch the matchplay one up.

Waverley salvaged a 3-3 tie against the hometeam of Chirnside and Eastern in the process.

In other matches, Chirnside’s Lachlan Borg defeated Nathaniel Foo of Churchill 5 and 4, Callum Doyle turned back Alex Dilosa 2 and 1, Tris Stafford defeated Gajdobran 7 and 5.