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Baylon wins Kalayaan Cup

BY RIC DE VERA – Mike Baylon from Colebee and member of various Filipino social golf clubs won the 27th Kalayaan cup golf tournament held at Macquarie Links International Golf Club  on October 3, 2022 (postponed from June 13, 2022), to celebrate the 124th year of the proclamation of Philippine Independence.  He scored unbeatable net 62 strokes under the modified stroke scoring system using his social handicap of 28, adjusted for slope. He was awarded with monumental championship trophy, return economy airfare from Philippine Airlines and the privilege to engrave his name in the perpetual trophy. “It was a good day of golf. I changed my putting style which helped me. Thanks to the organisers, sponsors and players. Finally thanks to my beautiful wife who always supports my hobby” said an ecstatic Mike Baylon.

27th Kalayaan Cup Golf tournament Over-all champion, Mike Baylos (middle) after receiving his monumental trophy from Cris Bacucang (Kalayaan, Inc. President and 2nd from right), PAL Ticket from Arthur Angelopoulos (PAL National Account Manager and extreme left). While Ferdi Francisco (KI PRO and 2nd from left) and Bob Leones (KI OC and extreme right) look on.

Division winners with their net scores and handicaps used were: Romy Costelo for A with net score of 71 using his handicap of 14; John Prasad for B with net score of 66 using his handicap of 18; Russell Gaerlan for C with net score of 69 using his handicap of 29. These division winners were awarded with $200 cash prizes and trophies for their exceptional efforts.  

Division runners up with their net scores and handicaps used were: Darshan Shivalkar for A with net score of 71 using his handicap of 3, Richard Dadat for B with net score of 67 using his handicap of 2 and Rowel Silang for C with net score of 71 using his handicap of 28. These division runners up winners were awarded with $100 cash prize and trophies for their best efforts.

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic and simultaneous golf tournament from another group, there were 65 golfers who played and enjoyed the perfect weather.

Novelty winners on all 18 holes were paid $20 each on all divisions for either, Nearest the Pins, Longest Drives and Best Drive and pitch, except for hole number 9 which was designated as hole-in-one with a cash prize of $10,000, of which nobody won.

At registration, pack of fruits, bottled water and promo materials from Expert Education and Visa Services were distributed to all golfers. After the tournament, everyone was ushered to partake the sumptuous buffet dinner courtesy of Macquarie Links chef.  

During the awards presentation, Cris Bacucang, President of Kalayaan, Inc. thanked all the sponsors, the golfers and specially the groups from Puro, Pogi, Fil-oz, Fijian and the ASEAN golfers, namely Thai as well as well as Australian friends. He specially thanked the major sponsors Philippine Airlaines, Millionaires Alliance and others. “A big thank you to all the committee members who helped in the 2022 Kalayaan cup golf tournament which was postponed from last June” he finally said.

The Philippine Ambassador to Australia, Her Excellency, Ma. Hellen B. de la Vega sent her warmest greetings to the participants and supporters of the 27th Kalayaan cup golf tournament. She mentioned the current year’s Independence Day theme is “Kalayaan 2022: Pagsuong sa Hamon ng Panibagong Bukas” (Rise towards the Challenge of a New Beginning).                              

The Filipino-Australian community makes the historic and dynamic partnership of the Philippines and Australia personal and truly special “I take the opportunity to thank the Filipino-Australian community for demonstrating responsible citizenship at elections held in both your countries in May this year. I encourage you to always represent your country and the democratic ideals it has lived by. We should never lose sight of the sacrifices that allowed us to enjoy the freedoms we now have.” she finally said.

The Kalayaan Organising Committee which was formed in early 2016 has the responsibility of organising, promoting and maintaining the annual Kalayaan Cup golf tournament in conjunction with the celebration of the proclamation of Philippine Independence. All members are volunteers and are assigned in different tasks. In May 2018 the committee was incorporated into Kalayaan, Inc. and Bob Leones was elected as the founding President. Currently, Cris Bacucang was elected as the incumbent President.  Kalayaan, Inc. is also an affiliate of the Philippine Community Council of NSW, the umbrella of most organisations in the state of NSW. The Kalayaan cup golf tournament is now the longest running and well attended golf tournament in the Filipino-Australian golfing community in New South Wales. One of its objectives is to raise funds to be donated to the Missionaries of Charity in Tondo, Manila. This golf tournament is also the way of paying tribute