Monday 27 March 2017

Oosthuizen shuns glitz to plough Open winnings into dream tractor

Mark Garrod

BRITISH Open champion Louis Oosthuizen has shunned the glamour of a new Ferrari or Porsche and instead spent some of his €1m winnings on a custom-built tractor.

The South African sealed a seven-shot win at St Andrews on Sunday, as his potential challengers fell by the wayside during the final round.

"Being a farm boy it was one of my big dreams and I bought myself a nice John Deere tractor for my farm back in South Africa," said the 27-year-old.

"John Deere is very close to my heart. It is for me to drive around on and I made sure that there was enough space for my little daughter Jana to sit beside me. We're going to have a lot of fun."

Oosthuizen is now in Stockholm for the Scandinavian Masters and the fact that he flew from Manchester by private jet underlined his new status as a star of the game.

"The last two days have been hectic and it will be nice knowing my phone is switched off and put away in the bag -- I'm looking forward to it."

Alongside him still is Soweto-born caddie Zack Rasego who, not surprisingly, has kept his job a week after being told the British Open could be his last event with Oosthuizen.

The player's manager Chubby Chandler said: "It was a possibility, but it is not going to happen now. There was a feeling Louis needed a more experienced caddie. Now Zack has proved his worth. It would not look too clever to sack your caddie after you have just won a Major."

While Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowry, Rory McIlroy, and Darren Clarke have been focusing on the Lough Erne challenge, several of their compatriots are competing in Sweden -- among them Damien McGrane, Peter Lawrie, Michael Hoey, Simon Thornton and Gary Murphy.

Meanwhile, Paul Casey is looking to bounce back from the disappointment of last week's near miss at St Andrews at the Canadian Open in Toronto today.

"I'm obviously disappointed with my finish, but there are positives. Six months ago, I had no idea if I was going to get back to this sort of form again.

"And I know I'm going to win a Major, it's just a matter of time."

Scandinavian Masters,

Live, Sky Sports 3, 9.30am, 2.30

Canadian Open,

Live, Sky Sports 3, 8.0

Irish Independent

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