Oosthuizen braced for return

2010-11-04 14:26

Shanghai - British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen revealed on Thursday that he has to wear a specially fitted brace on his injured ankle for the next three months.

Oosthuizen tore ligaments on a hunting trip in late September when he returned home to attend the wedding of fellow South African Charl Schwartzel.

The 28-year-old had shot a deer and was running after the wounded animal when he tripped and fell in a small pot hole.

Oosthuizen showed off his black ankle brace after carding a three-under par 69 on the first day of the WGC-HSBC Champions event in Shanghai.

It is Oosthuizen's first event since finishing tied fourth in the KLM Open and the injury forced him to miss an emotional return to St. Andrews for the Dunhill Links Championship.

"It was nice to come back after a long layoff and shoot a 69 as I am very restricted on my shots and that's just one shape, a very big draw," he told Reuters.

"But the good thing is that my short game is still there.

"I am wearing this brace that I have to wear for the next three months and till at least the end of January.

"It was just one of those freakish things as I had wounded the animal and I was running towards it and just overdid it and tripped in this pot hole.

"I've had a lot of treatment on the ankle and I am at the stage where I am really not going to hurt it anymore but then I do feel it hurting on some shots.

"But I want to play as many events as I can to get my confidence back up.

"I've got next week's event in Singapore, the Dubai World Championship, the Nedbank and then the two in South Africa that includes the South African Open in Durban.

"But the doctors are really worried that I might aggravate the injury by falling over in a bunker or something like that, so they were really concerned for me even though they've given me the okay to return to competition."

While Oosthuizen was sad to miss the Grand Slam of Golf, he was more disappointed not to play in the Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland.

"It was painful to miss both the Dunhill and Bermuda but more so the Dunhill as I was really looking forward to going back to St. Andrews just to see what my emotions would be like stepping back onto the Old Course," he said.

"I also missed that great photo shoot in front of the R & A building with Martin Kaymer, Graeme McDowell and Monty (Colin Montgomerie) with the US PGA, US Open and Ryder Cup trophies.

"But then it always hurts looking at TV coverage of the guys playing knowing that I can't be out there competing."