Tadd's Fans Support Pro Decision

MILILANI (KHNL) -- Golf fans young and old gathered at the Mililani Golf Club for a tournament Thursday afternoon. The focus, though, quickly turned to Hawaii's latest pro golfer.

Brody Uehara works on his short game. The eight-year-old has only been playing golf for six months, but has a firm opinion on Tadd Fujikawa's big announcement.

"That's a good idea that he's going to turn pro," said Uehara.

Older golfers agree with the youngster.

"It gives a lot of energy back into a community and also gives the young people in the community hope that they could go in and turn pro," said Brian Suzuki, a golfer participating in the Hawaii Air Cargo Golf Tournament. "I'm very excited for him."

But some wonder if he's turning pro too soon, whether at age 16, he's ready for the next level.

It's the same question many asked when another young Hawaii phenom turned pro. Now, after several less than stellar performances, Michelle Wie is feeling the heat of the critics.

But Fujikawa said he is up for the challenge.

"I think I'm not that young," he said. "I'm younger than most, but I think I'm ready."

"I don't think it's a matter of age," agreed Suzuki. "I think he's mature enough to handle his situation."

Fujikawa said his fans' support has fueled his passion, while making him a better golfer.

"It's basically gotten me this far," he said. "With a lot of support of Hawaii and all of my family and friends and everyone, I wouldn't be here right now."

While one young man dreams of winning majors, this younger man has simpler goals.

"To get the ball in the hole in one putt," said Uehara.

Working on his game to become the next Tadd Fujikawa.

Several major corporate companies are interested in Fujikawa. Nothing's signed yet, but his agent is working out the details of these endorsement deals.