The AP is reporting that Japanese teen sensation [all golf journalists are contractually obliged to refer to the youngster as either a ‘sensation’ or ‘teen sensation’] Ryo Ishikawa has pledged to donate all of his 2011 tournament earnings to the earthquake and tsunami relief effort in his native Japan. Not only that, but he’s allegedly promised an additional Y100,000 for every birdie he makes over the course of the season.
Though there has been little doubt in recent weeks about the extent to which Japanese players and media have been affected by the unfolding chaos back home, this new development is still a startling one. Should the teenager’s 2011 be anywhere near as successful as his 2010, it could result in an overall contribution of over $2m and, relatively speaking, a donation of generosity nearly unprecedented in the world of sport.
‘The Bashful Prince’ doesn’t seem such a ridiculous nickname anymore.