South African golfer Louis Oosthuizen shrugged off a disappointing playoff loss in the Masters last week and jetlag after a 30-hour flight from Georgia to Kuala Lumpur to win the Malaysian Open at a canter.
“I thought I was going to be a lot more tired,” said Oosthuizen, after recording the fifth victory by a South African on the 2012 Race to Dubai. “It was a long journey to get here and I have to be honest and say that I didn't expect to play this well because of the tiredness.“
“The one thing I did know was that the game was there so that helped a lot. I was pretty tired at points in those first couple of rounds but overall it has been great and I am over the moon with the result. “
It was third time lucky for the 29-year-old, who came third in the Houston Open two weeks ago and lost a playoff to finish second in the Masters last week, before finally clinching victory in Malaysia.
He began the final day one shot ahead of Scotland’s Steven Gallacher still needing to complete eight holes of his third round. Gallacher briefly managed to pull level with the South African after birdieing the 15th and 16th holes in a row, but bogeyed the 17th to hand the lead back to Oosthuizen.
It remained a close affair through the first nine holes of the final round, but Oosthuizen finished strongly to earn a three-shot win.
"Having a good week this week was important and playing well. I didn't want to come here and play bad but to win means a lot because I have been playing well for the last few weeks now and to win gives me a lot of confidence for the rest of the season.”
Spain’s Rafael Cabrera-Bello shared third on 12 under with England’s Danny Willett and American David Lipsky, with Charl Schwartzel sixth on 11 under.
World No 7 Martin Kaymer and defending champion Matteo Manassero also recorded top-ten finishes after rounds of 71 and 69 respectively.