Ishikawa takes another giant step

Ryo Ishikawa continues to outstrip Rory McIlroy - at least when it comes to firsts.

McIlroy and Lee arrive, jet-lagged, in KoreaWhile Rory McIlroy has the higher world ranking (he's 24th to Ryo's 47th) and finished in the money in all four majors this year, the 17-year old Bashful Prince has passed another milestone.

On Tuesday, he took over from McIlroy as the youngest player to make the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking and was later named along with Adam Scott as one of International captain Greg Norman's wildcards for the President's Cup matches with the United States.

Set to turn 18 on September 17, he will become the youngest player in the history of those matches when he arrives at Harding Park in San Franciso from October 6-11.

McIlroy and Lee - via the Chosun Ibo and Google translateHe won't have anyone translating for him either, according to Norman.

Ishikawa picked up his fifth Japan Tour win on Sunday, his third of the season, while McIlroy is still waiting to get his second career victory. It will be fascinating to see what happens when they tee it up with 18-year old New Zealander Danny Lee in the OneAsia run Kolon Hana Bank Korean Open near Seoul this week.

Asked why he picked Ishikawa, Norman could have been talking about McIlroy:

Enthusiasm .... at the International Team meeting at the British Open, he was phenomenal. He was engaged, he walked around the entire room, introduced himself to everybody, made sure everybody understood that he wanted to be on the team. 

He played well that week. He played with Tiger. He stood up to Tiger. So that tells me that he can deal with a pressure situation. It's not like you're playing 73 straight holes, you're playing 18 holes with great energy, 14 or 15 or 13, depending on how the play goes that day. So he is not afraid of the big moment. 

The other thing which came into my mind is he travels with an entourage of about 50 media people, so he's used to that type of atmosphere, that buzz going on all the time, and it doesn't bother him. I think that is a true reflection of his inner personality, as well. 

And then obviously winning the other day by five shots was tremendous. This year has been tremendous. It was a no-brainer for me. I like to give young people the opportunity. Obviously he has the credentials, but he has to be given the opportunity at the same time. 

As a captain you've got to have faith in that ability, and I have a lot of faith in him.

McIlroy sent out his first Tweet for quite some time when he arrived in Seoul earlier this week.

Playing in the Korean Open this week with Ryo Ishikawa and Danny Lee. Should be good fun..... These kids make me feel old!!