SHIZUOKA, Japan – The race is on.
After Ryo Ishikawa’s victory Sunday in the Mitsui Sumitomo VISA Taiheiyo Masters, the 19-year-old star breathed new life into his bid to retain the Japan Golf Tour money title.
He fired a closing-round 67 for a 14-under 274 total to finish two shots clear of Australian Brendan Jones, Ishikawa’s third victory of the season.
Jones, who won this event in 2007, also closed with a 67, pulling within a stroke of Ishikawa when he made a 30-foot eagle putt on the par-5 18th. Ishikawa responded with a birdie on the last hole to secure the win.
Katsumasa Miyamoto, Toru Taniguchi and PGA Tour regular Ryuji Imada shared third at 10-under 278. Hiroyuki Fujita, the joint leader after 54 holes, struggled to a 72 and dropped into a tie for sixth at 279 with Takashi Kanemoto.
Money-list leader Kim Kyung-tae carded a 68 and tied for 11th at 281. While Kim collected 3.78 million yen (US $45,800), Ishikawa closed the gap to less than 10 million yen with the 30 million yen (US $363,500) first prize. Three events remain.