石川遼 - Ryo Redemption at the Nippon Series JT Cup

It's going to be an ultra-exciting weekend as third round action begins tomorrow at the Golf Nippon Series JT Cup.

The tournament... and the top spot on the Japan Golf Tour money list... will be decided over the next two days, and Ryo Ishikawa, currently second in the money rankings, must win Sunday at Tokyo Yomiuri Country Club, in order to overcome Korea's Kim Kyung-tae and become Japan Golf Tour's leading money winner for the second consecutive year.

A devastating first round 76 made that possibility seem extremely remote until the sprightly superstar came back with superlative, second round eight-under 62, earning him a share of sixth place and putting him back into the money title mix.

Also in mix however,  is Yuta Ikeda, who heads into the third round leading by three strokes thanks to a stellar, bogey-free first round 63... and second round 69.  He too can be crowned Japanese number one with a win this weekend, and he'll tee off tomorrow six strokes ahead of his 19-year-old countryman.

Current money leader Kim... who stands to become the first JGTO money champion from South Korea... is currently in a share of 10th following a disappointing second round 73.

That's what I meant by ultra-exciting.  As you probably know,  I'm a huge fan of Ryo Ishikawa... for more reasons than I can name.  His extraordinary talent, whimsical Yonex wardrobe and sweet, shy demeanor are the obvious ones.

Noriko Yamada, a friend and fellow Ishikawa fan, sent me this link which contains the above photo of Ryo. I believe it was taken during his sensational Friday round.  His pants and hat appear to be leather, he's wearing a couple of necklaces over a turtleneck and he's sporting an awesome asymmetrical hairstyle.

Let's face it... the kid just keeps getting better.