Honored to help spearhead the national women’s golf team again in the Southeast Asian Games, Rianne Malixi hopes to deliver a better, stronger performance this time around in Cambodia.
“I’d say it’s an honor for me to have another chance to represent the country in the SEAG,” said Malixi, who debuted for the Nationals in the Vietnam edition of the region’s premier sporting conclave last year.
While she fell short of target in individual play, ending up joint ninth, the ICTSI-backed ace succeeded in coming up with a bronze medal in team play in stirring fashion, chipping in for birdie on the fourth playoff hole to beat Singapore’s Suanne Loh in a match play format.
Along with teammates Lois Kaye Go and Mafy Singson, Malixi is more than ready to take on the best, targeting a more productive campaign at the Garden City Golf Club in Phnom Penh while at the same time toning down expectations.
“There are chances of getting gold. But I won’t be setting expectations. I’ll be starting out fresh since I have been practicing a lot and devoted my time to prepping,” said Malixi, who primed herself up for the SEAG battle through rigorous training at Royal Northwoods Golf and Country Club in Bulacan.
The men’s and women’s individual titles will be disputed via a stroke play format over 54 holes while the team championship will be played in match play.
Go placed fourth in individual play in Vietnam while ICTSI teammate Mafy Singson wound up eighth.
The Pinay aces, however, will have their hands full given the depth of the competing field, headed by the fancied Thais made up of reigning WAAP champion Eila Galitsky, Prim Prachnakorn and Nawaporn Soontayaphas, Singapore’s Aloysa Atienza, Jaymie Ng and Loh, Malaysia’s Geraldine Wong, Ng Jing Xuen and Foong Zi Yu, and Vietnam’s Le Chuc An, Than Bao Nghi and Doan Xuan Khue Minh.
Malixi, who ended up tied at 13th in the Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific Championship in Singapore last March after sharing third place in the 2022 edition of the event in Thailand, actually nailed a fourth victory on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour in Iloilo last month. But she missed spiking her SEAG buildup with a victory in Japan after blowing a final round lead in the Royal Junior, one of the top-ranking amateur tournaments.
But the setback hardly dampened her spirits as she buckled down to work to sharpen her skills while making the necessary adjustments that would guarantee a medal-contending performance in Cambodia.
“My past performances will not dictate how I will next week. I’m excited and nervous at the same time but knowing how much prep and hard work I have put int the past few weeks, I know I’ll do just fine,” said Malixi.