Late bloomer Kinoshita makes it two in a row on JGTO

Late bloomer Kinoshita makes it two in a row on JGTO
Late bloomer Kinoshita makes it two in a row on JGTO

It took Ryosuke Kinoshita eight years to accomplish his career first victory on the Japan Golf Tour, but his second win came right after. He made a great come-from-behind win by scoring a 62 on Sunday at the Fukushima Open.

“I made miraculous putts on the 2nd and 3rd. Both were 10-metre left to right breaks,” said the champion. Then, he went on making 3-metre, 9-metre, 5-metre, and 4-metre putts from the 5th hole to the 9th where he holed in from the fringe to make 5 birdies in a row.

At this moment, he has caught up with the leader Ryuko Tokimatsu. Eventually, Ryosuke holed out with 25-under and waited for Ryuko to finish, and the battle was extended to a playoff.

Ryosuke made a 35-yard lob shot from right side rough, a shot he mastered from the US Open experience.

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“I used to hit it with clean contact, but I saw Phil Mickelson hit just a bit before the ball. So, I practiced and tried it out in the tournament. That was my 4th try in the tournament, but it worked again. I gained another short game technique,” he said.

With that lob shot, he got himself a 1.5-metre birdie putt for the win.

Ryosuke’s career first victory came three weeks ago at the JGTC Mori Building Cup.
“I was really relieved that I finally got my first win. But I was told that you are not top class if you end up with only 1 win. So, I was really pushing myself for another victory.”

Ryosuke became the first Japanese player with back-to-back wins just after the first career victory.

“I didn’t have the knowledge of the record that I made. I was just doing my best. But I am surprised that I was able to achieve my second victory so soon.”

This week, his coach was on his bag. “I was doing all the yardage calculations, so as a caddy he didn’t do much, but he was coaching me during the game and that support made me possible to win this week.”

Ryosuke’s first challenge at the Fukushima Open was back in 2014 was resulted in a 2nd.

“I am honoured to have won in front of the Fukushima Prefecture fans. I am really happy that I got to make amends for my 2nd place finish back in 2014 with this victory. I hope I could keep up this momentum and add few more victories. I wish I can win next week’s Japan PGA as well.”

Text and photo courtesy: JGTO