Golf

Player: SA has Masters chance

2012-04-02 16:50
Gary Player (File)

Johannesburg - Gary Player believes defending champion Charl Schwartzel and fellow South African Louis Oosthuizen are serious contenders at this week's Masters at Augusta National.

Player, one of only five men to win all four Majors, said the new crop of South African players could hold their own against the world's best.

"There are a host of guys, including Charl Schwartzel, the defending champion from South Africa, who I expect to be in contention," Player wrote on his blog on the Laureus Sports Awards website.

"Charl is a very consistent golfer and that's the hallmark of a champion. It would not surprise me to see him excel. You know Charl will play well most of the time.

"Charl and Louis Oosthuizen, who won the 2010 Open Championship at St Andrews, are the latest in a new wave of South African golfers of whom I am very proud."

Player said it was no surprise that the country produced talent like Oosthuizen and Schwartzel as South Africa had the right climate, fantastic courses and great junior programmes.

Player, however, tipped Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy to wear the green jacket on Sunday.

"I have to favour Rory McIlory this year," Player said.

"You remember last year he was playing so well and was leading and he had that collapse in the final round with an 80.

"I think Rory has a little revenge in his heart for the golf course.

"The way he recovered from that upset at the US Open a couple of months later showed what maturity he has.

"The disappointment might have seriously affected a less mentally strong young man."

Player also felt Tiger Woods's recent victory in the Arnold Palmer Invitational would make him a force at the first Major tournament of the year, which starts on Thursday.

"Tiger Woods played extremely well when he won the Arnold Palmer Invitational the week before last," Player said.

"It's the first time I've seen him drive the ball well in a long time."

Player said Woods's knowledge of the course would make him hard to beat at Augusta.

"He's confident and he's had a tough time for two years and he's very hungry. I expect him to do extremely well."

He said Woods, however, would have a tough field to contend with, including world No 1 Luke Donald and a consistent Lee Westwood.

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

 
 
Featured Blog

The stock of Bulls and Sharks 2014 Super Rugby jerseys are slowly becoming available after the festive season break, writes blogger Baylion.

Latest blogs
Vote

Which is your favourite event on the golfing calendar?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.