If it was a fight they'd have stopped it on the 12th hole. Paul Casey's triple bogey and Louis Oosthuizen's birdie resulted in a four shot swing and left just the formality of Oosthuizen completing the final holes and securing the 2010 Open Championship at St. Andrews. Yes indeed, the gold medal champion golfer of the year he was. Dissecting fairways, hitting greens, and nailing putts has always been a formula for success, especially at majors, and Louis performed the task at hand admirably for 4 days. The 200:1 longshot at the tournament's start glued together rounds of 65, 67, 69, and 71 to finish at -16, seven better than runner-up Lee Westwood. Casey's final round 75 plunged him to 3rd behind compatriot Westwood and tied with Rory McIlroy and Henrik Stenson. Young McIlroy would have won the thing had it been based on best three rounds. His windy 80 on Friday cost him much of a shot and to his credit he rallied from that disaster to post 69, 68 on the weekend. Final Full Field Scores.
The best American finishers were Sean O'Hair and Nick Watney in a tie for 7th place at -6. Tiger Woods, 23rd, and Phil Mickelson, 48th, looked like senior players yielding to the youth movement. Both were trounced by Korean Jin Jeong, the low amateur and winner of the Silver Medal. Mickelson couldn't keep his ball on the property at the course with the widest fairways on the planet. Some are over 100 yards wide. Woods made a much ballyhooed putter switch for the event and found he couldn't putt with that one as well. He'd have done just as well with a shovel. This weekend raised many questions about the upcoming Ryder Cup to be held on Euro soil. One has to question the US' chances.
Oosthuizen was a deserving winner having survived the elements and the obstacles the Old Course had in defense of her honor. The size of his victory was testament to his ability to hit fairways in spite of the wind and be as long or longer than the others as well. Quite a spectacle and enormous fun to watch. Every Open Championship should be held at St. Andrews. Now it will be interesting to see if young Oosthuizen is a one hit wonder like Lawrie, Hamilton, and Crane, (all of whom missed the cut this week), or will his name appear on leaderboards to come? Worth watching.