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  • Greg Norman’s Great Pick

    11 Oct 2009

    By The Armchair Golfer


    Ryo Ishikawa at the PGA Championship. (jpellgen/Flickr)

    The Americans won the Presidents Cup on Sunday for the seventh time in eight tries. The final points total was 19 ½ to 14 ½. Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Steve Stricker—the world’s top three golfers—led the way.

    While International team captain Greg Norman was questioned extensively about his captain’s choice of fellow Aussie Adam Scott, his other captain’s pick made an impressive debut in the Presidents Cup. Ryo Ishikawa, the 18-year-old, was one of only two International team players to post a winning point total. (The other was Ernie Els.) The Japan Tour player went 3-2-0, including a singles victory over Kenny Perry.

    I hadn’t seen much of Ishikawa before this week. Obviously, he’s a terrific putter. Coming into the Presidents Cup, Ryo won three times this summer on the Japan Tour in a 10-week stretch. And he’s the youngest player to crack the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking, currently ranked 47th.

    “When Greg first picked me...I didn’t know if I was worthy to be a part of this team,” Ishikawa said. “But when I got here and all of the players looked after me, talked to me, gave me a lot of support, and that really helped me throughout this week.”

    I look forward to seeing more of Ryo. It will be fun to see how he and Rory McIlroy fulfill their potential as golf’s future stars.

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