ITOSHIMA, FUKUOKA PREF. – Ryo Ishikawa, who has struggled with lower back issues this year, captured the JGTO tour’s Rizap KBC Augusta on Sunday by five strokes for his first win of the season.
On a day when play was suspended for nearly three hours due to approaching thunder storms, Ishikawa closed with a 3-under-par 69 at the par-72 Keya Golf Club.
After starting the tournament in a share of the lead and never trailing, Ishikawa finished with a four-day total of 15-under-par 273 and prize money worth ¥20 million yen.
“With the suspension of play and everything else, it was one long day,” Ishikawa said. “Being the leader put pressure on me all this time and I’m exhausted.
“I was concerned having been away from the game, but I made good shots when I needed to. I’m so happy to have won. I want to aspire for something more.”
Ishikawa has not played on the U.S. tour since he made the cut at February’s Phoenix Open. He pulled out of the next tour event, the Pebble Beach Pro Am, with what was later diagnosed as lumbar discopathy. He returned to action at the end of July in Japan’s PGA Championship, where he failed to make the cut.
Ishikawa is still looking for his first career victory on the PGA tour.