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New Chair of Sydney’s Filcom Kalayaan Golf Cup

FebKalayaanKOC meeting Jan 13[28619]Ric de Vera GOLF CORNER –  LONG TIME  IT professional and golfing aficionado Mr Bob Leones of Castle Hill, will chair the prestigious Kalayaan Golf Cup which is held every year in conjunction with the celebration of Philippine Independence Day in June.

The decision was made by members of  the tournament organising committee during  a meeting held on Saturday, January 13, 2018 at Stonecutters Ridge Golf club function room,.

For the past 20 years  the PAL Kalayaan cup  was chaired by this writer.

“We will rely on our past experiences and will do a good planning for the upcoming 23rd series of this event” said Bob in accepting the position.

Bob Leones is a graduate of De La Sale University in Manila  and  a semi-retired IT specialist from Castle Hill. He is well known in the Filipino-Australian golfing circuit.

He has been Kalayaan Cup’s long running  flight organiser, rules & handicapping officer and awards presenter for Sydney Metro Social golf club, effectively assisting his wife Vangie Leones. He was also the official handicapper during the past two series of the PAL Kalayaan cup golf tournament.

The PAL Kalayaan cup is held during the long weekend (Queens birthday) in June for the past 22 years. The Philippine Embassy in Canberra as well as the Philippine Consulate General in Sydney are the avid supporters. Philippine Airlines, the national flag carrier of the Philippines is the major sponsor with naming rights.

Other major sponsors and supporters in the past were LBC Cargo, R.O. Biala Pty Ltd. AAES Air Conditioning Specialist, Link Finance Group, LJ Hooker Blacktown and others.

For the past ten (10) years, part of the proceeds of the tournament was donated to the Missionaries of Charity in Tondo, Manila. This charitable institution is an extension of Mother Teresa of Calcutta that cares for the sick and abandon children.

The Kalayaan Cup started as Philippine Independence Day cup in June 1996 coordinated by Fil-oz Social golf club under it’s President Donald Lopez, with around 30 members participating.

Major prize was economy class return airfare to Manila partly sponsored by Allied-Summa Travel & Tours Pty Ltd. In 1999 to 2004, it was held at various golf courses with a major prize of economy class return airfare to Manila courtesy of Philippine Airlines. In 2001 an A5 Souvenir Program was commenced and thru the suggestion of then Consul General in Sydney Ariel Abadilla, the name was changed to Kalayaan Cup Golf Tournament.

At this stage, the naming rights was offered to Philippine Airlines in return for two (2) economy class return airfares to Manila through the then Country Manager for Australia, Arnul Pan. Hence, the start of PAL Kalayaan Cup Golf Tournament.

During the succeeding years, other golfers from Asian countries were invited to join. We are very proud that we have regular participants from Thai Social Golf club, Indonesian Golf Association, the Malaysian Consulate in Sydney, the Vietnamese golf association and golfing friends from Fiji & Samoa, among others.

“Whilst our main objective is to promote camaraderie, friendship and sportsmanship through the game of golf to the greater Filipino-Australian community, we also want to pay tribute to our forbears who fought hard for us to attain the freedom that we now enjoy”

“Am sure the new Chairman would be in a best position to handle the PAL Kalayaan Cup with the full support of all the committee members” this writer commended the new tournament chair.