Louis Oosthuizen will launch the defence of his South African Open on Thursday. Photo: @sunshine_Tour on twitter

JOHANNESBURG – Louis Oosthuizen will launch the defence of his South African Open hosted by the City of Johannesburg title in the company of countrymen Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Jayden Trey Schaper.

Home favourite Oosthuizen kicked off his 2019 Race to Dubai campaign in style with a commanding six shot victory when the European Tour last visited Randpark Golf Club 13 months ago.

And the World Number 20 will be hoping to shine again when he begins his first competitive round of the decade from the first tee at 8.35am on Thursday.

South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen in action. Photo: Michael Sherman (ANA)

Teeing off ten minutes earlier will be former champions Richard Sterne, who won this event in the 2009 season, and Chris Paisley, the 2018 winner.

They will be joined by Sterne's fellow South African Justin Harding in a high quality three ball.

One of the main attractions of the afternoon will be the group containing local hero Charl Schwartzel, Englishman Eddie Pepperell and Thomas Detry, who begin their opening rounds at 12.10pm.

South African and 2016 champion Brandon Stone will get his first round under way at 8.15am alongside this season's AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open winner Rasmus Højgaard and Daniel van Tonder. 

The South African Open hosted by the City of Johannesburg tees off at the Randpark Golf Club on Thursday. Photo: @Sunshine_Tour on twitter

African News Agency (ANA)