Louis Oosthuizen plays his shot from the seventh tee during the first round of the 2021 U.S. Open. Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images via AFP
Louis Oosthuizen plays his shot from the seventh tee during the first round of the 2021 U.S. Open. Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images via AFP

I enjoy tough golf courses, says Louis Oosthuizen on share of the lead at US Open

By Michael Sherman Time of article published Jun 18, 2021

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JOHANNESBURG - South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen was tied for the lead on four-under with two holes left, when play was suspended due to darkness in the first round of the US Open at Torrey Pines, in San Diego, on Thursday.

Heavy fog meant the round had to be cut short, but not before Oosthuizen joined American Russell Henley who had already finished and signed for a four-under 67 on the par 71 layout.

Oosthuizen finished second at the PGA Championship last month, and had no problem continuing his fine form on the difficult US Open venue.

“I just enjoy playing really tough golf courses. I think somehow I focus a little bit better when I play those courses, knowing that the margin for error is really small,” said Oosthuizen.

“Especially around this place, you've got to drive it well, you've got to start it in the fairway, and you're going to have trouble if you're missing fairways around this golf course and I've really been driving it good lately.

“I played nicely, putted nicely and hopefully I will just keep the momentum going.”

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Beginning his round on the 10th, Oosthuizen bogeyed the par three 11th but responded with a birdie at the par four 12th. It was around the turn that Oosthuizen found his groove with three birdies in a row from the 16th to move his score to three-under.

Playing the front nine, four pars followed before a birdie on the par four fifth to tie the lead for the 2010 Open champion. The 38-year-old will return early on Friday morning to complete the par three eighth and par five ninth, before starting his second round.

ALSO READ: Louis Oosthuizen can go one better in US Open

Charl Schwartzel was the next best SA player with an even par 71 in a tie for 23rd. Wilco Nienaber, making his major debut, signed for a respectable one-over 72 in a tie for 41st, alongside compatriot Christiaan Bezuidenhout.

Dylan Frittelli shot two-over 73 in a share of 61st alongside Branden Grace who had three holes left to play in his first round.

Erik van Rooyen was 79th after a three-over 74, Garrick Higgo was in a tie for 110th after five-over 76 and Thomas Aiken battled to a nine-over 80 in a tie for 154th.

African News Agency (ANA)

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