South African Louis Oosthuizen, hungry for victory following so many near finishes, will compete in next year’s SMBC Singapore Open, organisers announced today.
The 2010 Open Championship winner, runner-up when he last played in Singapore and with a record haul of second placings in Major championships, is the latest star golfer to confirm for the tournament after it was recently unveiled that reigning US Masters champion Sergio Garcia from Spain will compete.
The US$1 million tournament will be played on the Serapong Course at Sentosa Golf Club from January 18 to 21, and will be jointly sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the Japan Golf Tour Organisation. It will form the opening event of the season on both circuits.
In August, Oosthuizen made headlines after finishing joint second in the US PGA Championship – giving him the distinction of finishing runner-up in all four Majors.
He is only the seventh golfer to accomplish this feat, joining Craig Wood, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson, Greg Norman, and Phil Mickelson.
His record of runner-up finishes are: the 2012 US Masters, where he lost in a sudden death play-off, the 2015 U.S. Open, the 2015 Open Championship where he was defeated in a four-hole aggregate playoff, and this year’s PGA Championship.
Indeed, by his own admission he will be a driven man when he returns to Singapore as when he last played here in 2012 he narrowly lost out in a play-off to Italy’s Matteo Manassero.
Manassero prevailed in a gripping sudden-death play-off after he eagled the third play-off hole (the Serapong’s par-five 18). Oosthuizen had missed a five-foot birdie putt on the same hole to win on second extra-hole.
A year earlier, the South African claimed third place at Sentosa, having just missed out on a play-off by a shot.
“You could say I have some unfinished business in Singapore,” said Oosthuizen.
“I am really looking forward to getting back there and playing in the SMBC Singapore Open. It will be the perfect way for me to start the season, on a great golf course, where I have great memories and where I know I can win.”
The South African is an eight-time winner on the European Tour – including the 2012 Malaysian Open – and in South Africa he has triumphed on seven occasions.
“I am really focused on winning titles and competing week in and week out and in 2018 that hopefully means starting with the SMBC Singapore Open!” added the 34-year-old.
He was recently selected to represent the International team in this month’s Presidents Cup – an event he also played in 2013 and 2015.
Thailand’s Prayad Marksaeng won last year’s SMBC Singapore Open, in what was the 51st edition of the prestigious tournament.