On 11-12, June, the 24th Nippon Open (日本オープン) was held in Kibougaoka Bunka Koen
This is one of four national tournaments held in Japan.
*Some of the PDGA digital scorecards were not being recorded correctly, probably due to some technical difficulties.
The first round for advanced women finished with a huge lead by Kuniko Yoshioka, who is a veteran seasoned player. The second place goes to Mihoko Kitahara scoring +15, followed by Haruka Minamimura +18.
- Kuniko Yoshioka: Tot. +9
- Mihoko Kitahara: Tot. +15
- Haruka Minamimura: Tot. +18
The veteran player Kuniko Yoshioka kept her lead by playing consistently. Meanwhile, Mihoko Kitahara straggled this round by gaining +22 strokes. One of the newer players, Kazuki Samata had a decent round and tied with Mihoko Kitahara for 2nd.
- Kuniko Yoshioka: Tot. +19 (Rd +10)
- Kazuki Samata: Tot. +37 (Rd +16)
Mihoko Kitahara: Tot. +37 (Rd +22)
Day 2 of the Nippon Open was sunny but had windy conditions. Kuniko Yoshioka continues to lead the field with round score +17 which is best in the division. The battle for the second place heated up between Kazuki Samata and Mihoko Kitahara during the front 9 with a one-stroke lead by Kazuki. In the back 9, Kazuki continues to have a consistent play whereas Mihoko Kitahara straggle the round and dropped to 3rd place.
- Kuniko Yoshioka: Tot. +36 (Rd +17)
- Kazuki Samata: Tot. +56 (Rd +19)
- Mihoko Kitahara: Tot. +62 (Rd +25)
Final Round (9 hole)
The win goes to Kuniko Yoshioka, a veteran Japanese player. She will be going to the Amateur Worlds in the upcoming week. This win will be great to hype up for the big event in the US.
- Kuniko Yoshioka: Tot. +47 (Rd +11)
- Kazuki Samata: Tot. +66 (Rd +10)
- Mihoko Kitahara: Tot. +74 (Rd +12)
*Left: Mihoko Kitahara, Right: Kazuki Samata. Kuniko Yoshioka had to go back early.
The best bet for the title of this division is definitely Kenta Aranami, an ultimate youth player. His previous notable career was the 7th place at the 34th Japan National Championships held in Fukushima this year. However, round 1 ends with a one-stroke lead by Toshimitsu Kodera, who is a newer face in the disc golf scene.
- Toshimitsu Kodera: Tot. +4
- Kenta Aranami: Tot. +5
- Takumi Kitamura: Tot. +7
In round 2, Kenta Aranami shows his real full strength and finished the round just only +1. Meanwhile, Toshimitsu Kodera straggled the round with +9 making him drop to the 3rd and Takumi go up to the 2nd place.
- Kenta Aranami: Tot. +6 (+1)
- Takumi Kitamura: Tot. +12 (+5)
- Toshimitsu Kodera: Tot. +13 (+9)
In round 3, Kenta continues his lead. Meanwhile, the battle for the second-place heats up and kept switching the order. In the end, Toshimitsu led by one stroke against Takumi.
- Kenta Aranami: Tot. +8 (+2)
- Toshimitsu Kodera: Tot. +21 (+8)
- Takumi Kitamura: Tot. +22 (+10)
Final Round (9 hole)
The final round starts with a huge shot by Kenta Aranami where he threw 120+meter and shot an easy approach for birdie. As of the game for the 2nd place, both Toshimitsu Kodera and Takumi Kitamura get par on hole 1 and a double bogey on hole 2. The deciding game was on hole 3 (hole O was used as hole 3 in the final round). Toshimitsu Kodera’s forehand tee shot had a good look, but the wind made it turn and goes OB. Meanwhile, Takumi shot a more conservative forehand but lands behind a bush giving him a difficult look at the basket. On the next shot, Takumi juiced a bit and went OB on the left side of the basket, which is covered by some pine trees and foliage, making a hard look to save bogey.
After going OB, Toshimitsu gets relatively easy up and down with a forehand approach and securing a bogey. In the end, Takumi had to settle for a double bogey.
- Kenta Aranami: Tot. +5 (-3)
- Toshimitsu Kodera: Tot. +25 (+4)
- Takumi Kitamura: Tot. +27 (+5)
The win goes to Kenta Aranami by 20 strokes to the second place of Toshimitsu Kodera. The win makes Kenta qualify for the 1st Disc Golf Japan Series.
In Round 1, the youngest player Minii Iida (PDGA#156429) made a lead. On the other hand, Rika Tsukamoto (PDGA#8140) couldn’t show her full strength and set herself in 3rd place.
- Minii Iida: Tot. +6
- Yuka Nakagawara: Tot. +8
- Rika Tsukamoto: Tot. +9
In Round 2, Rika Tsukamoto had a consistent round shooting +9, the same as round 1. Meanwhile, Minii Iida and Yuka Nakagawara straggled and gets a huge number, +14 and +13, respectively.
- Rika Tsukamoto: Tot. +18 (Rd. +9)
- Minii Iida: Tot. +20 (Rd. +14)
- Yuka Nakagawara: Tot. +21 (Rd. +13)
Round 3 was a rough start for Minii Iida, shooting double bogey on hole 1 and a triple bogey on hole 2, which made Yuka Nakagawara hop up to the second place. Although Yuka Nakagawara had a fine round, Rika Tsukamoto showed her strength as a seasoned player and shot only +6.
- Rika Tsukamoto: Tot. +24 (Rd. +6)
- Minii Iida: Tot. +34 (Rd. +13)
- Yuka Nakagawara: Tot. +38 (Rd. +18)
Final round (9 holes)
The first hole of the final round was tough for all the players that Rika took triple bogey, and Yuka and Minii took bogey. Rika continues to struggle but in the end, Rika Tsukamoto had enough strokes on other players from previous rounds and took the victory to home.
- Rika Tsukamoto: Tot. +32 (Rd. +8)
- Yuka Nakagawara: Tot. +41 (Rd. +7)
- Minii Iida: Tot. +44 (Rd. +6)
Round 1 starts with a shot by Kenjiro Yokota, taking an eagle on hole 2. He had a somewhat fine round at the front 9 with only one bogey. However, the back 9 was a roller coaster for him having 1 ACE, 3 birdies, 1 bogey, 2 double bogeys, and 2 pars. The ups and downs of the score were enough for Manabu Kajiyama to take the lead and finish with -7. Meanwhile, Kouichi Fukuta had a consistent round with fewer birdies and above but fewer bogeys, making him tie with Kenjiro Yokota at 2nd place.
- Mababu Kajiyama: Tot. -7 (55/62)
- Kouichi Fukuta: Tot. -3 (59/62)
Kenjiro Yokota: Tot. -3 (59/62)
- Yutarro Sakai: Tot. -11 (Rd -9)
- Manabu Kajiyama: Tot. -10 (Rd -3)
- Kouichi Fukuta: Tot. -6 (Rd -3)
Rd2 hot round was shot by Yutaro Sakai, the best round score, – 9, and goes up to the lead by one stroke against Manabu Kajiyama. Yutaro seemed to have a clean round but on hole 16 he gets his first bogey of the round. Besides that, he had a great round with birdies and pars. Manabu seemed to have a great start with getting “EAGLE” on hole 6, a par 4 190-meter-hole, but he struggled on hole 9 where he gained triple bogey. This ultimately cost him to be at second place. Meanwhile, Kouichi Fukuta had a steady round with just only 1 bogey with 4 birdies.
Round 3 was a struggle for all the players with only two players getting under par. Yutaro and Manabu had a neck and neck battle throughout the rounds and both shooting -3 which still makes Yutaro be on the lead. On the other hand, Kouichi Fukuta straggled and took his first over-par round. At this point, there is a very low chance for him to catch up with the leading group.
- Yutaro Sakai: Tot. -14 (Rd -3)
- Manabu Kajiyama: Tot. -13(Rd -3)
- Kouichi Fukuta: Tot. -5 (Rd +1)
Semi Final Round (9 holes)
The semi-final started well for Yutaro taking birdie on hole 1, whereas Manabu took par. However, Yutaro struggled under the pressure and took bogey on holes 3 and 5. The Champ, Manabu, did not miss this opportunity and made birdies on holes 4, 5, and 9 with no bogeys on the score. This made him come back to the driving seat. Meanwhile, Kouichi Fukuta also had a great round shooting -3 and securing his position in third place.
- Manabu Kajiyama: -16 (-3)
- Yutaro Sakai: -14 (E)
- Kouichi Fukuta: -8 (-3)
Final round (9 holes)
This round was so important for Yutaro to make his victory against the GOAT, Manabu Kajiyama. The round starts with 2 stroke differences between the first and second place. However, Yutaro couldn’t take the chance and made Manabu only extend the lead by 3 strokes at the end.
The win goes to the GOAT, Manabu Kajiyama.
- Manabu Kajiyama: Tot. -19 (Rd. -3)
- Yutaro Sakai: Tot. -16 (Rd. -2)
- Kouichi Fukuta: Tot. -5 (Rd. +3)