TOKYO (Reuters) - Teenage Japanese golfer Ryo Ishikawa has pledged to donate all of his earnings this year to the relief effort for the victims of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in his country.
As well as handing over everything he makes on the domestic JGTO Tour and his overseas appearances, the 19-year-old world number 45 will contribute 100,000 yen ($1,207) for every birdie he registers.
Ishikawa has earned more than 100 million yen ($1.2 million) in each of the past three seasons since he turned professional in 2008 at the age of 16.
Last year, he earned 151 million yen to claim third place on the Japanese order of merit and managed 341 birdies, the most on the tour.
“I’ve set my goal at 200 million yen in total,” Ishikawa told reporters in Augusta on Thursday, where he will make his third consecutive U.S. Masters appearance next week.
“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.”
As well as causing the world’s worst atomic crisis since Chernobyl in 1986, the quake and tsunami left more than 27,000 people dead or missing and has taken a massive toll on the world’s third largest economy.
Writing by John O'Brien in Singapore; Editing by Alan Baldwin