The first round of the (British) Open has come and gone. And there was a familiar name atop the leaderboard. It was that of Louis Ooisthuizen. The South African golfer has ten wins between the PGA Tour and the European Tour, including his only major which was at the Open in 2010, and is 38, but he always seems to show up, especially of late, when major hardware is on the line. After the first round at Royal St. George’s, he led with a -6 score.
He made six birdies (all in a nine-hole stretch between 8 and 16) and no bogeys on the day. He held a one-shot edge over Jordan Spieth and Brian Harman and a two-shot lead over the likes of former Open winner Stewart Cink, McKenzie Hughes, and Dylan Frittelli. Ooisthuizen is far from the ‘sexy’ pick when majors come around, but he just always seems to be in the mix with his brand of classical ball-striking, and he once again looks like the road to winning the Claret Jug will include his presence. The course, as you could imagine, played easier than it notoriously has done so. But, as always is the case at the Open, that can shift quickly. We may see harsher weather come the weekend, and that would represent a much, much more difficult task for the players hoping to win a major.