Daniel Pam secured victory at Ibadan Mesiogo Open last weekend after carding a final round score of one under par 69.
The Abuja-based professional held off the stiff resistance by Emos Korblah and Andrew Odoh to win by two shots after a gross score of even par 210 at the Ibadan Golf Club.
As the inaugural winner of the tournament, he earned the prize purse of N1.7million in addition to a place at the 3e Actuaries Equatorial Guinea Open Championship that holds in Mongomo, Equatorial Guinea in December.
The tournament paraded a field of 98 golfers from 17 countries, playing for the four available qualifying places to Mongomo.
Elisha Markus, also from IBB Club, Abuja and Sunday Odegha, tied for fourth to scale through, while Vincent Torgah edged fellow Ghanaian, Kojo Banini in a pulsating sudden death that stretched to three holes, to grab the last spot to Mongomo.
One of the tournament’s highlight was the qualification of Englishman Hinton Craig. The Equatorial Guinea Open defending champion was penalised for playing on a wrong tee on hole eight on the first day of the tournament.
Pam teed off the final round in fifth position and five shots off the pace. But three birdies on the front and the last on the 17th secured him the outright lead for the tournament.
In contrast, others ahead him started to recline. A 78 nearly dashed Torgah, the overnight leader’s hope. Markus missed birdie sights on 16 and 17, while the cerebral Odoh, eagled the par 5 7th, but faded after four successive bogies.
Pam hit 13 of the 18 fairways on the day. The Plateau-born golfer, however, got a huge relief at the last hole, when he pulled his drive into an ant-hill and was allowed a free drop.
“I feel over the moon. This is a very important victory and I am looking forward to the trip to Equatorial Guinea, which incidentally will be the first time I will be playing golf out my country. My caddy contributed to the victory. His course knowledge was exceptional, ” the player who turned professional in 2007 said.
The tournament sponsor, Olawale Opayinka of 3e Actuaries, thanked the Oyo State government for creating the right atmosphere for the hosting of the international tournament in one of Africa’s biggest cities.