April 9 2012
By Melanie Hauser, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Who wouldn't have thought about destiny?
Who wouldn't have figured this was going to be their day?
Louis Oosthuizen wasn't any different than the rest of us. After his historic double-eagle on the second hole -- the first on that hole and only the fourth in tournament history -- it was hard to settle down.
"I mean, you know, when something like that happens early in your round, you think that this is it,'' he said. "That was my first double‑eagle ever. So it was tough; it was tough the next five holes to just get my head around it and just play the course.
"But I felt like I found my rhythm going down 11, and you know, played well in from there.''
Just not well enough to walk off with his second major.
Oosthuizen, who started the day two shots behind third-round leader Peter Hanson, grabbed the lead with that albatross on the second hole, but it wasn't enough to hold off Bubba Watson, who birdied four consecutive holes on the back nine -- 13, 14, 15, and 16 -- to tie him and force a playoff. Two holes later, Oosthuizen bogeyed the 10th hole and Watson parred for the win.
"He played brilliant,'' said Oosthuizen, who won the 2010 British Open. "And, you know, I don't feel like I could have hit two better putts in the playoff. So, it's a hard day, but you know, congrats to Bubba.''
The two couldn't have more dissimilar games, but they both parred the first playoff hole. But Oosthuizen got into trouble at the second playoff hole -- the 10th.
"For me it's an easy tee shot,'' he said. "It's 3‑wood, I turn a 3‑wood over quite easy, and I just caught it a little bit off the heel and it went to the right. I wanted to get it down there to have a little bit flatter lie, and hit a great second shot, the ball didn't go anywhere.
"I had exactly the same distance as I had on 10 in regulation round, and hit the same club. I just wanted to pitch it somewhere five, six yards onto the green, and the ball just didn't go anywhere. So yeah, it's just one of those . . . "
A few minutes later, he watched Watson two-putt for the win.
"He hit an unbelievable shot there," Oosthuizen said. "I played well. This is not one I felt like I played badly. Great stuff to him. He deserves it."
As for the albatross? He gauged it as 210 yards to the front of the green -- a good 4-iron for him.
Instead, he hit a great one.
"I needed to pitch it about five, six paces on the green, and I knew if I get it right, it's going to feed towards the hole,'' he said. "But never thought it would go in.''
It did. For history. Just not for a Green Jacket.