In what can only be called a surprise, this year’s British Open trophy at St. Andrews was caught by a newcomer, a relatively unknown South African, Louis Oosthuizen. Despite being the underdog, his game saw the passion, the temperament and the skill of a veteran.
His seven hole victory of the game’s most coveted trophy was a close call at times but Oosthuizen never backed down and always showed who was in charge. After the eighth hole, he seemed to be losing his grip as his lead fell to just three holes but the next bout of perfection, an eagle for the ninth hole, put him way ahead as Paul Casey’s fumble at the 12th with a triple bogey gave Oosthuizen a comfortable 8 shot lead that he constantly maintained. This was until the 17th, where he dropped a shot but it was too close to victory to make any difference whatsoever.
With the trophy in his hands, Oosthuizen mentioned that his goal was to keep his calm and get as far as possible. The victory definitely surprised him, but a very pleasant surprise at that. He admitted that it was hard to control himself after the 12th hole with an 8 shot lead and the one drop at the 17th, he attributed it to a sudden burst of anxiety which cramped him up a bit. St. Andrews was only his second victory, the first being the European Tour. Oosthuizen conveyed his excitement by saying “To win an open is special. To win at St. Andrews is extra special”.
Oosthuizen, a mere 27 year old, lives on a farm next door to his parents in Gouritz River South Africa. He graduated from Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation and relied on it for financial support and training. Oosthuizen represented South Africa in the boys’, youths’ and seniors’ squad. His efforts are now directed into opening his own junior golf academy.