Ishikawa selected to address players at 2010 Asian Amateur Championship

ryo ishikawa
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Ryo Ishikawa, only 19, has already won eight times on the Japan Golf Tour.
Associated Press

Series:

For the second time, the Asian Amateur Championship will gather the top amateur players from up to 34 nations to determine the region’s top golfer of the year. With an invitation to play in the 2011 Masters Tournament awaiting the winner and a spot for both the winner and the runner(s)-up in International Final Qualifying for the 2011 British Open at stake, the Asian Amateur Championship will again aim to motivate players to play at the game’s highest level.

From Oct. 7-10, a 120-player field will compete in the 72-hole stroke play event on the West Course at Kasumigaseki Country Club, located about one hour northwest of Tokyo near historic Kawagoe City in the Saitama Prefecture. The tournament is organized by the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC) and supported by the Masters Tournament and the R&A.

During the championship, two-time Masters and British Open participant Ryo Ishikawa will speak at a private dinner for players and officials, assuming an inspirational role filled last year by Gary Player at the event’s inaugural event in China.

“Ryo is a golfing icon to the people of Japan,” said APGC President Kwangsoo Hur. “At a young age, he has quickly become a contemporary example of how global success helps breed the growth of a sport in one’s homeland. His message will no doubt be further inspiration for every player in the championship field to fulfil their dreams in golf.”

Ishikawa, only 19, has already become an eight-time winner on the Japan Golf Tour, with his first victory coming in 2007 as a 15-year-old amateur. He celebrated his best finish in a major championship at this year’s Open when he tied for 27th at St. Andrews. He is currently ranked 52nd in the Official World Golf Ranking.

“It is such an honor to be included in this prestigious event and I am eager to greet the players in the field and the officials from the APGC, Masters Tournament and the R&A,” Ishikawa said. “I am optimistic that others may learn from my experiences and help grow this great game, which has already given so much to me and my family.”

The Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the Masters Tournament and the R&A created the Asian Amateur Championship in early 2009 to help develop golf in Asia and provide a focal point for the amateur game in an area of the world where the game’s growth has unlimited potential. The inaugural tournament was won by Han Chan-won at Mission Hills Golf Club in southern China