Ishikawa, Furyk playing catch up as matches near


Ryo Ishikawa is behind the proverbial 8 ball in preparing for Thursday’s opening match of the Presidents Cup. The Japanese star got to Royal Melbourne a day late, leaving him short on practice at a course he has never seen.

Ishikawa, who had two flights to Melbourne canceled on Monday, said he will rely heavily on foursomes partner Ernie Els for local knowledge.

'I'm really happy that Ernie is with me and that he knows a lot about the course, and he tells me a lot about the course – how to attack the course and the game plan, so I'm really happy that he's with me,' Ishikawa said Wednesday.

Despite the tardiness, International captain Norman has faith in Ishikawa to perform well, coming off a T-8 last week in Japan.

'I haven't talked to Mr. Norman after the pairings have been out, so I don't really know, but since he put me in the first group, that means just go out and play hard and come out with a win,' Ishikawa said.

Jim Furyk, meanwhile, arrived on time to Australia, but his clubs didn't. He had to wait 24 hours before getting in true practice with his teammates.

'I wish I had a little bit more rounds, a little bit more experience around it, but I've been doing things every day and picking up some different things about the greens,' he said.

A holdover from the '98 team, which lost the Cup at Royal Melbourne, Furyk said he has some memories to rely upon. 

'So I remember the holes in my head pretty well but the nuances of the greens, I'm still figuring out. But after two, two-and-a-half days, we should be able to pick up a good bit of knowledge,' he said.

As for the culprit in losing his clubs, Furyk said it was futile to care: 'No one ever fesses up to it, so it doesn't matter.'

Watch wall-to-wall coverage of the Presidents Cup live on Golf Channel. Tournament air times: Golf Channel Wednesday 9PM-2AM, Thursday 7:30PM-2AM, Friday 3PM-2AM and Saturday 6:30PM-12:30AM. NBC coverage Saturday at 8AM and Sunday at noon. (Note: all times are ET)