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Two South African Natives Head The Field at The Alfred Dunhill Championship

Louis Oosthuizen has played sparingly in recent months, but the Open champion should be a formidable challenge for the field at this week’s Alfred Dunhill Championship.

Oosthuizen’s most recent result was a 13th at the Dubai World Championship where he slid back with a 73 on the final day. 

He has, however, along with his Open victory he won on the European Tour in March at the Open de Andalucia de Golf where he topped a field that included Thomas Levet and Francesco Molinari.

The bookmakers’ like him, but not enough to put Oosthuizen at the top of their board going out on day one at (13-1).

The bookies’ favourite is Oosthuizen’s countryman Charl Schwartzel who has put 3 top-25’s in his last 5 events.  They have put him at (6-1) making him a highly questionable two-fold favourite.

There’s nothing in Schwartzel’s recent play that puts him even questionably ahead of a reigning major champion.

Yes, he won back-to-back very early in 2010 during the South African swing of the European Tour, but he’s shown us very little proof in recent months that he’s in top form.  Schwartzel’s had only two top-10 finishes in Europe in the past six months.

The saving grace, however, for Schwartzel is that if he plays well he may work his way into two man battle with Oosthuizen because there’s really no else of note teeing it up this week.

A couple of known players garnering high odds from the bookies are Alex Cejka at (51-1) and German veteran Hennie Otto who is currently going at (41-1).

There is good reason for the long numbers.  Cejka didn’t make a cut in the last four months of the PGA Tour season after finishing 3rd at the Turning Stone Championship in August.  It would be a mildly big surprise if he’s able to challenge this predominantly South African field this week.

His recent play has been mediocre having only broken 70 twice in his last 9 competitive rounds.

Otto, somehow, has been giving a better shot at the win than Cejka even though he hasn’t made a cut in his last three starts on the European Tour.  This past season was easily the worst of his career.


Golf is so popular simply because it is the best game in the world at which to be bad.  - A.A. Milne

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