Eish, we had so many South Africans in the Open Championship at Royal St George’s in the UK…but unfortunately no triumphant SA winner like last year’s Louis Oosthuizen. This year the coveted trophy went to Darren Clarke (42) from Northern Ireland.
But we can be proud at the number of South Africans who did make the cut (although unfortunately Ernie Els was not one of them!).
George Coetzee came 15th. George has come a long way since he went against his father’s wishes for him to become a tennis pro. He’s already accomplished four top 12 finishes in Europe this year, including third place in the BMW International Open.
Charl Schwartzel tied 16th, not as great a performance as his excellent win at the US Master at Augusta earlier this year. His brother Adrian (who sometimes caddies for him) is now also playing on the SA circuit.
Trevor Immelman, who was already a scratch golfer by the age of 12, came tie 38th. He won the 2008 Masters by three shots from Tiger Woods but had an injury the following season.
And proving just how tough and unpredictable golf can be, last year’s winner Louis Oosthuizen tied at position 54 with fellow South African, Durban-born Rory Sabbatini who now lives in Texas. Rory took the World Cup in 2003 with partner Trevel Immelman, and has had a victory this year in the 2011 Honda Classic.
The unluckiest perhaps was two-time US Open chamption Retief Goosen who had to retire hurt from the competition because of a back injury.