Ishikawa giving it all to Japanese relief

Teenage golfer, Ryo Ishikawa, has announced that he intends to give all his winnings this year to his home country’s relief fund.

Teenage golfer, Ryo Ishikawa, has announced that he intends to give all his season winnings this year to his home country’s earthquake relief fund.

The Japanese superstar, already his nation’s biggest golfer, also revealed that he will donate an additional £750 for every birdie he makes during the year. He’ll get his first chance next week at Augusta, where he’ll participate in his third Masters Tournament.

“I know recovery in the quake-affected areas will take a long time – I’d like to strive together with the victims in recovery efforts,” he said.

“I have enough money to spend for my golf. I still have savings – I believe this is the most positive way for me to spend money.”

Though he is still only 19-years-old, Ishikawa already has earnings of over £3.3million, and that’s only from three years as a professional on the Japanese Tour. He has also signed a number of lucrative sponsorhips deals.

He first won as a 15-year-old amateur, and has a further eight more Japanese Tour victories as a professional, one of which included winning the Crowns in 2010 thanks to a closing 58 – the lowest round in any major professional tour in history.

Ishikawa was playing in the WGC-Cadillac Championship in Miami three weeks ago when the earthquake struck. He spoke to reporters at the time.

“It’s beyond being a distraction for me – I’m worried for the whole country of Japan,” he said.

“The fact that I was finally able to communicate with my parents did help me feel so much better. I just tried to focus, but it is a battle out there for me.

“Sendai is quite far way from where my parents live. From the Tokyo area it’s some 250 miles away.

“It is not possible to block something of this magnitude out completely, but I understand that in the position that I am, together with the other star athletes from Japan and other sporting areas, we can provide encouragement and hope for the people of Japan by myself doing the job.”