‘G Mac’ Questions Augusta National Decision To Invite Ishikawa.

Graeme McDowell has questioned Augusta National’s decision to afford Japan superstar golfer, Ryo Ishikawa a ‘Special Invitation’ to contest next week’s Masters.

'G Mac' in relaxed mood on the 18th hole during Wednesday's Shell Houston Open Pro-Am. (Photo - www.golfbytourmiss.com)

It will be the second occasion in four appearances Ishikawa will have the benefit of driving down Magnolia Lane as a special invitee.

The only concern this year is that the player who has won 10 times in his career, and all but one in Japan, qualified for Augusta the very next week by finishing runner-up in the PGA Tour event in Puerto Rico.

However when qualifying for the Masters off the World Rankings last Sunday Ishikawa had fallen outside the top-50 to 52nd.

But that was of no concern to the 19-year old or Japanese TV giants as Ishikawa will still get to tee-up at Augusta National.

Former U.S. Open winning McDowell raised questions of Augusta affording Ishikawa a ‘Special Invitation’ when he was quizzed on the eve of the Shell Houston Open on the real likelihood of tripe major winning, Ernie Els missing Augusta for a first time since making his debut in 1994.

'G Mac' offering set-up advice to his Pro-Am partners on Redstone's 18th. (Photo - www;golfbytourmiss.com)

“When a guy like Ernie misses a Major, it’’s obviously disappointing,” said McDowell.

“Ernie was one of my heroes in the ‘90s when he was winning his U.S. Open’s, and he’s a quality player and he’s given such a great run the last couple of weeks.

“We were talking even a few weeks ago, did he deserve an invitation, a special exemption, because I know the committee at Augusta can do that.

“But Ryo Ishikawa had one outside of the world’s top-50, and the Masters are well within their rights to do so. 

“I just think a guy like Ernie has to be a strong candidate. 

... and moments after the Pro-Am 'G Mac' questions Augusta Natinoal's decision to award Ryo Ishikawa a 'Special Invitation'.

“Surely, the green jackets have discussed him at length and decided that for whatever reason, he doesn’t deserve an invitation.

“But a poll among the players as to the guys who deserve the invite, he would be top of the list for sure.”

Ishikawa missed the cut in his first two appearances and finished 20th last year yet the Japanese golfer has yet to break 70 around Augusta National.

Surely it doesn’t make good TV coverage when the country’s best golfer can break 70 in a Major Championship.

Strangely, Ishikawa is not in Houston honing his game ahead of the Masters in contrast to Els who is desperate to continue an unbroken run of 18 Augusta National appearances.



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