Golf: Pagdanganan eyes more events, Top 10 finishes in 2021

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 27 2021 06:16 PM

Bianca Pagdanganan of the Philippines plays her shot from the third tee during the final round of the 2020 KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Aronimink Golf Club on October 11, 2020 in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania. Patrick Smith, Getty Images/AFP

MANILA, Philippines -- Filipina golfer Bianca Pagdanganan wants to build on a solid 2020 campaign as she targets more Top 10 finishes in LPGA events this year.

The 23-year-old Pagdanganan, who ended 2020 ranked 150th in the world, showed great potential in her first season as a professional, finishing in the Top 10 of the Women's PGA Championship and the LPGA Drive On Championship in October.

She couldn't quite keep up her momentum in the U.S. Women's Open, getting cut after the second round, but Pagdanganan still showed that she has what it takes to compete at the highest level.

As she prepares for the upcoming season, Pagdanganan is now setting her sights on better finishes.

"Definitely, winning events is a major goal for me this year -- regular (events) and hopefully a major," said Pagdanganan during a press event Tuesday, where she was also named the newest Smart Sports ambassador.

"I think for me, it's also important to aim high. Coming into tournaments, I usually don't have any expectations, I don't like any additional pressure," she admitted.

"But it's always important to keep goals just to, you know, so you know what you're working towards," she added. 

Pagdanganan burst into the scene when she finished tied for ninth in the Women's PGA Championship, where she also made headlines for her power. The Filipina gained plenty of attention for her driving distance with her average of 283.07 ranking first in the tour.

After the Women's PGA Championship, she finished third at the Drive On Championship just a few weeks later. Those results, said Pagdanganan, were a boost to her confidence early in her career.

"That definitely made me feel good and confident about my own game," she said.

"So of course, goals are goals. I probably want to say, definitely more Top 10s than last year. I mean, I'm just a rookie so I know I have a long way to go," she added.

"Of course, on top of that, like I said, no additional pressure and I just wanna enjoy this whole year. Because I think that's when I play well, when I enjoy."

Pagdanganan is scheduled to return to the United States in the first week of February after a brief vacation at home. She competes for the first time this year in Gainbridge, on February 25-28.

"The goal is to play as many events as I can enter," she said. 

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