Louis Shines In Homeland
EAST LONDON, SOUTH AFRICA | Once again,
Louis Oosthuizen has silenced his Sunday competition. Last summer, the quiet South African
blew the field away with a solid final round at
St. Andrews to capture the Open Championship
by seven shots.
Sunday, at the Africa Open, he needed one
extra hole to seal the deal. But once again he
prevailed in a three-way playoff that included
Chris Wood and Manuel Quiros. All three had
finished on 16-under 276.
On the first extra hole, Oosthuizen pulled his
iron off the tee at the short par- 4 18th. “
Terrible tee shot,” Oosthuizen said afterward. But
he got a fortunate bounce from the rough that
moved his ball back onto the fairway. Spain’s
Quiros, who birdied the 72nd hole to get into
the overtime session, and England’s Wood also
found the short grass.
From 155 yards, Oosthuizen’s approach
stopped 10 feet from the hole. After Quiros
(chip from off the back of green) and Wood (25-
foot putt) missed their birdie attempts, the 2010
Open Champion calmly stroked the birdie putt
home to win the Africa Open title and get his
2011 off to a perfect start.
“It was one of those weeks where the putter
was very cold,” said Oosthuizen, who has now
won three times on the European Tour. “But my
caddie said it will go in eventually, to keep on
trying. And I made that one on the last, which I
Defending champion Charl Schwartzel of
South Africa headed a group of three players
who tied for fourth on 15 under, which also in-
cluded countryman Jaco Van Zyl and Scotland’s
Steven O’Hara, who closed with a 7-under 66.
“It was a bit of a struggle,” Oosthuizen
said, admitting there was extra pressure
playing in front of his fellow South Africans.
“But it’s always nice playing in South Africa.
You want to perform.”
Oosthuizen had bogeyed his last hole Satur-
day at the par-73, 6,674-yard East London Golf
Club to fall into a tie for the 54-hole lead with
Aussie Markus Brier on 13 under.
Oosthuizen was paired the first two days
with countryman Retief Goosen. The two-time
U.S. Open champion, quite surprisingly, missed
Louis Oosthuizen needed an
extra hole on Sunday to win
the Africa Open.