South African golfer Louis Oosthuizen plays a tee shot during his second round on day two of the British Open Golf Championship at St Andrews in Scotland, on July 16, 2010. AFP PHOTO/PETER MUHLY
South African golfer Louis Oosthuizen plays a tee shot during his second round at St Andrews in Scotland.

Oosthuizen is sticking around at St Andrews



Louis Oosthuizen could have been forgiven for making temporary accommodation plans at St Andrews rather than booking his rental house for the duration of the 150th anniversary British Open. The South African's record in major championships suggested he would be moving out before the serious weekend business gets under way this afternoon.

He laughed when quizzed on that subject in the same way as he light-heartedly dealt with the barrage of questions that tend to be fired at an unheralded player who storms into a commanding lead in such an important event. "I'm booked in until Sunday night, so yes, I was planning to make the cut this time," said Oosthuizen, who had only once previously completed all four rounds in one of the world's big four golf tournaments.

Oosthuizen, who missed six cuts out of seven and finished a lowly 73rd behind Padraig Harrington in what was the exception of the 2008 US PGA Championship, is good at self-deprecation. He has to be, possessing original forenames like Lodewicus Theodorus and bearing the nickname of "Shrek" after the less than handsome cartoon character. "My friends started calling me Shrek because of the gap between my teeth," he said, widening his smile to illustrate the point. "You can't always choose your friends. The other names are on my passport but I have been known as Louis right from the start."

Oosthuizen should need no introduction to golf enthusiasts in the Middle East having been the most consistent performer in last year's Desert Swing with second-place finishes in Abu Dhabi and Qatar and a seventh behind Rory McIlroy in Dubai. He admits, however, that he would like to raise his profile on the world stage. A splendid round of 67 yesterday to follow the 65 he posted on Thursday will have helped as he tops the leaderboard on 12-under par.

"I think my problem was not believing in myself," he said. "Everybody around me was saying 'you've got the shots, you're playing well', but I didn't take that advice. "I was very frustrated in the last four years because I knew I could win tournaments on the European Tour because I had won five in South Africa. But it just wouldn't happen. I came to the conclusion that I had to have more fun, enjoy myself more. There's a lot more to life than golf, you know."

A belated European breakthrough victory earlier this year at the Open de Andalucia in Spain changed his mindset, and he reflected: "I am reading it really nicely now and I'm looking forward to it from now on." Oosthuizen, 27, hails from a strong tennis background and his father was keen to continue the family tradition, but he stuck to his stubborn view that golf was the better option. The trouble came with finances, for the travel required to develop his game proved to be too much for the son of a farmer. That was about the time the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation began to identify young South Africans from families of limited resources.

He was 17 when he began with the foundation, leaving when he turned pro. "It was unbelievable what [Ernie] did for me, travelling around the country, helping with expenses, things like that," Oosthuizen said. "He's such a good mentor. And probably without him, those three years I've been in his foundation, I wouldn't have been here." The first signs of that decision being vindicated came in the world junior team championship of 2000 when he partnered Charl Schwartzel to a South African triumph. He followed that by shooting a spectacular 57 on his home course at Mossel Bay. Another low number looked on the cards yesterday as three birdies in a row from the par five fifth took him to the turn in 33 strokes on a wet but calm morning. However, he lost his momentum on the short 11th hole. He will hope to recapture it today.

wjohnson@thenational.ae

Ukraine

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Population: 44.13 million

Armed conflict in Donbass

Russia-backed fighters control territory

Innotech Profile

Date started: 2013

Founder/CEO: Othman Al Mandhari

Based: Muscat, Oman

Sector: Additive manufacturing, 3D printing technologies

Size: 15 full-time employees

Stage: Seed stage and seeking Series A round of financing 

Investors: Oman Technology Fund from 2017 to 2019, exited through an agreement with a new investor to secure new funding that it under negotiation right now. 

The specs: 2017 Dodge Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn

Price, base / as tested: Dhxxx
Engine: 5.7L V8
Transmission: Eight-speed automatic
Power: 395hp @ 5,600rpm
Torque: 556Nm @ 3,950rpm
Fuel economy, combined: 12.7L / 100km

EMIRATES'S REVISED A350 DEPLOYMENT SCHEDULE

Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates

ILT20 UAE stars

LEADING RUN SCORERS
1 Nicholas Pooran, 261
2 Muhammad Waseem (UAE), 248
3 Chris Lynn, 244
4 Johnson Charles, 232
5 Kusal Perera, 230

BEST BOWLING AVERAGE
(minimum 10 overs bowled)
1 Zuhaib Zubair (UAE), 9 wickets at 12.44
2 Mohammed Rohid (UAE), 7 at 13.00

3 Fazalhaq Farooqi, 17 at 13.05
4 Waqar Salamkheil, 10 at 14.08
5 Aayan Khan (UAE), 4 at 15.50
6 Wanindu Hasaranga, 12 at 16.25
7 Mohammed Jawadullah (UAE), 10 at 17.00

The Boy and the Heron

Director: Hayao Miyazaki

Starring: Soma Santoki, Masaki Suda, Ko Shibasaki

Rating: 5/5

Emergency phone numbers in the UAE

Estijaba – 8001717 –  number to call to request coronavirus testing

Ministry of Health and Prevention – 80011111

Dubai Health Authority – 800342 – The number to book a free video or voice consultation with a doctor or connect to a local health centre

Emirates airline – 600555555

Etihad Airways – 600555666

Ambulance – 998

Knowledge and Human Development Authority – 8005432 ext. 4 for Covid-19 queries

Challenge Cup result:

1. UAE 3 faults
2. Ireland 9 faults
3. Brazil 11 faults
4. Spain 15 faults
5. Great Britain 17 faults
6. New Zealand 20 faults
7. Italy 26 faults

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1. Fasting

2. Prayer

3. Hajj

4. Shahada

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Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Console: PlayStation, PlayStation 4 and 5
Rating: 3.5/5


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