Louis Oosthuizen relishing title defence at South African Open
Three places for The Open available via Open Qualifying Series; Watch live on Thursday from 10am on Sky Sports Golf
By Sky Sports Golf
Last Updated: 08/01/20 5:06pm
Louis Oosthuizen is hoping for more success on home soil ahead of defending his title at the South African Open.
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The world No 20 is the highest-ranked player at Randpark Golf Club, where he cruised to a six-shot win last year to claim his national open trophy for the first time.
Oosthuizen arrives in Johannesburg off the back of a runner-up finish at the Emirates Australian Open and a strong performance for the International Team at the Presidents Cup, with the 37-year-old looking to start his year with a victory.
"It [winning his home open] means a lot," Oosthuizen said. "I was wanting to win it for a long time, but there were lots of years I did not play.
"Now it has moved to January, it sort of suits my schedule. It's always nice coming back and just playing it, defending it is very special.
"It was a tournament I was really trying to get to win with all the great champions on there - Ernie (Els), Retief (Goosen), Mr (Gary) Player. I wanted to have my name on the trophy. It was nice having a big lead at the end there so I could take it all in."
Oosthuizen tees off alongside compatriots Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Jayden Trey Schaper, while Thomas Detry and Eddie Pepperell go out alongside former Masters champion Charl Schwartzel.
This week's is also the latest event in The Open Qualifying Series, where the leading three players who finish in the top 10 and are not already exempt will earn a spot at the final major of the year.
England's Chris Wood, who has appeared at The Open in six of the past seven years but is yet to qualify for the 2020 edition, said: "I had a good two-and-a-half months off to really put some work in.
"A season of [being] injury free would be a good base to start, then you find some form and it [a tour victory] is not far away, that is for sure."
Watch the South African Open throughout the week live on Sky Sports. Live coverage begins on Thursday from 10am on Sky Sports Golf.