“What a golf course! It’s a really spectacular golf course, and it’s in great condition at the moment. It’s great to be playing links golf again, and The Open week is always special to me,” he said.
The world number 11 opted to play the PGA Tour’s John Deere Classic last week, continuing his love affair with the farming machinery manufacturer. Now that he’s back under Scottish skies his style of golf will need to change.
This week is not about carving up the course with driver. It’s about accuracy and pot bunkers, rolling fairways and penal rough, glory and heartbreak.
This week differs from nearly any other, because punishment is an inch away from every shot. With the 2010 Open Championship to his name, Oosthuizen is no stranger to the highs and lows of The Open, especially when the weather gets Scottish.
“It’s playing really firm, which is good. This course can be very tough if it starts to rain and the wind gets strong. It’s still Links golf and the ball can bounce any way, so you have to take what comes,” he said.
But King Louis is ready to tackle the oldest major, and felt comfortable with his game. On Tuesday he took two irons into the par fives, looking to keep the ball low and out of the wind.
“I played nicely in the practice rounds and I was hitting it nicely off the tees. The main thing this week is avoiding the fairway bunkers, even if getting it into the fairway means a longer shot into the greens,” he explained.
The like of Gary Player, Ernie Els and Jack Nicklaus won The Open at Muirfield, and it did not surprise Oosthuizen, who added: “I think the elite list of winners at Muirfield comes down to ball striking. You’re going to have a lot of long irons and you need to show what you’ve got if the conditions are tough. Let’s see what this week brings for us.”