It's no Masters, but win is still a major relief
Updated: 2012-04-17 07:50
Louis Oosthuizen said on Sunday that winning the Maybank Malaysian Open was just the tonic after his disappointment at the US Masters - and sets him up nicely for the season's other majors.
The 2010 British Open champion eased the misery of last week's play-off loss with a commanding, three-shot victory in the European and Asian Tour event, and he said it had been vital to put in a good performance.
"I feel it was important for me to put up a good fight this week. Last week was tough, it takes a bit out of you. I knew I had to keep focused and not just plod along, and I did that very well," he said.
"This means a lot. I've been playing well for a while now, I finished third in Houston, second last week and a win here so it's definitely a great confidence boost for the season."
Oosthuizen, 29, who shot 68 in his final round for 17-under-par 271, said the win even compared to last week's eye-popping albatross at Augusta, only the fourth in Masters history and the first ever at the par-five second.
"The albatross at Augusta is something you don't really even dream about because to be the first one to do it on that hole was just something out of this world. It was great," he said.
"To be part of any history at Augusta is special. But to me, this one is very special. It felt good after what happened last week, just to show myself that when I'm in a tough spot on the golf course I can pull it off."
Oosthuizen flew 30 hours from Augusta, arriving in Malaysia late on Tuesday, and shared a hotel room with his wife and their two children, a 10-week-old newborn and two-year-old daughter.
He said it was an emotional moment when he was greeted by his daughter after coming off the 18th green with his fifth European Tour win.
"It was great having them here, it always is," he said of his family.
"It's always nice when you come off the 18th green and your little girl's there waiting to give you a hug. If you've played bad or good, it doesn't matter. She still wants to give you that hug."
Scotland's Stephen Gallacher, who was on Oosthuizen's trail all day, said the South African's win had been deeply impressive.
"Phenomenal performance coming off last week," Gallacher said. "I though he may get tired today and obviously he didn't. He's a fit guy. Fair play to him.
"He played great. He was on form. Beaten in the Masters in a playoff, you're playing well. I thought the course would look a bit easier to him than to us."
Agence France-Presse in Kuala Lumpur
(China Daily 04/17/2012 page23)