Golf

Strong SA contingent at Links

2011-09-28 19:36
Charl Schwartzel (File)

Johannesburg - Major winners Ernie Els, Retief Goosen, Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel will lead a strong line-up of South African golfers at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, which starts on Thursday.

Schwartzel, who won the US Masters at Augusta in April, will play with his father, George, at the European Tour event, which is centred around St Andrews, the "home of golf", in Scotland.

"I'm really looking forward to playing this week," Schwartzel said on Wednesday.

"Standing on the first tee at St Andrews still gives me goosebumps.

"It is difficult to describe the feeling to someone who has never played it."

In other SA family tie-ups, former world No 1 Ernie Els teams up with father, Neels, and 2010 British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen will play with brother, Rikus.

Goosen, a two-time US Open champion, said he looked forward to the tournament, but admitted he had not yet fully recovered from a back injury.

"I am still struggling a little bit with my back," Goosen said.

"I have been working on it during the past month when I have basically had a break from golf.

"I've only played two rounds of golf in that time".

Goosen said he hoped to produce a solid showing at the event, but he was not putting pressure on himself to win the title.

"I'm keen to get back out there and compete, but I am not expecting too much of myself," he said.

"You never know in this game, of course, and being relaxed after my month off might mean I go out there and shoot a low score or two.

"But overall, I'm just going to go out there and hit shots and see where it takes me."

An impressive field will tee off at the Links Championship, including world No 1 Luke Donald, world No 2 Lee Westwood, and defending champion Martin Kaymer.

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