Ryo Ishikawa is facing the prospect of disciplinary action by the Japan
Golf Tour after being caught violating COVID quarantine rules.
The 30-year-old has issued an apology after being photographed entering a clubhouse after a round on a course in the Chiba Prefecture on October 27, just daysreturning home from California, where he took part in a qualifying event for the Korn Ferry Tour.
tabloid publication claimed that Ishikawa ignored Japan’s public health
orders and quoted an unnamed source as saying that Ishikawa was among a
group who played on the same course as the general public before hosting a “drinking party” later that night.
Japan currently has strict COVID-19 mitigation measures in place, which require those who enter, re-enter or return to Japan (including Japanese nationals) to, amongst other things, stay for 14 days at a designated location and to refrain from using public transportation.
Ishikawa made headlines in 2008 when he became the youngest player ever to reach the top 100 of the Official World Golf Rankings.
He has won 17 times on the Japan Golf Tour, most recently in December 2019.
In response to the reports, the one-time phenom has signalled an intention to resign from his post as vice-chairman of the Japan Golf Tour Players Association and the Japan Golf Tour Organisation. He has also withdrawn from this week’s Mitsui Sumitomo Visa Taiheiyo Masters and has said he will leave it to Japan Golf Tour officials to make a decision about his appearance in future events.
In a statement, Ishikawa said: “I deeply apologise for any concern and inconvenience caused by the tabloid story. I have been spending my 14-day quarantine period at an approved golf club and undergoing daily health monitoring, but I admit I was partially at fault, and I am sorry.”