Oosthuizen contends with new focus, old putter


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Louis Oosthuizen quietly snuck up the Waste Management Phoenix Open leaderboard on Sunday thanks to three birdies on his final five holes, and nearly snuck into the playoff with Hideki Matsuyama and Webb Simpson, ultimately coming up just one stroke short.

After his final-round 65, he credited an important club switch for the improved play.

“Old Faithful. I have been putting well with it,” Oosthuizen said. “Last week I tried something different, but I went back to the one I like.

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Oosthuizen, winner of the 2010 Open Championship and seven other European Tour events, said he will play more PGA Tour events this season, so he wanted to make his first start at TPC Scottsdale.

“This year, I’m focusing more on the PGA Tour. Made sense to start it early and come and join the guys here,” Oosthuizen said. “The crowds were magnificent this week. It was an unreal feeling once you got on the 16th tee.”

Finishing a few groups ahead of Matsuyama, Oosthuizen knew his score probably wouldn’t be enough to get in to a playoff, but he stuck around anyway just in case.

“I’ll hang around. But it’s probably going to be, you know, not enough,” Oosthuizen said.

His was proven right a short time later when Simpson and Matsuyama finished at 17 under.