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TOKYO - WORLD number one Tiger Woods's absence from golf might prompt the US PGA Tour to court sponsors more aggressively in Asia, further embracing Japanese teenage star Ryo Ishikawa, a Japan Tour executive says.
The European Tour has tapped the booming Asianmarket over years but the US body started to look at the region only "in the past year or two," Japan Golf Tour Organisation senior director Hiroshi Yamanaka said.
"Asia is where money moves and gathers," he told AFP as global sponsors started to desert the 33-year-old American superstar following his announcement of an "indefinite" break from the game amid an infidelity scandal.
"Tiger's absence affects spectator turnouts and TV ratings. It makes it still tougher for the US tour to survive on its own amid difficulties such as the pullout of various sponsors due to the subprime loan crisis," he said. - Sapa-AFP