Oosthuizen targets winning form at Ballantine's Championship

Wed 24 Apr 2013

Oosthuizen targets winning form at Ballantine's Championship

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Seoul, April 24: World number seven Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa is eager to erase the heartbreak of missing the cut at the Masters by putting up a noteworthy debut performance at the €2,205,000 (Approximately US$2.8 million) Ballantine’s Championship which tees off at the Blackstone Golf Club on Thursday.
Oosthuizen’s uncharacteristically missed the cut at the year’s first Major last week and is determined to bounce back by reproducing his best form that led him to multiple victories worldwide including his Open Championship win in 2010.
“My short game really let me down at the Masters as my putting wasn’t good enough. I had far too many putts, and ended up missing the cut by two,” said Oosthuizen.
“I hit it okay. It was not great, but not terrible either. The greens just got the better of me for the two days. But it hasn’t knocked my confidence too much, and I still feel good about this week,” said Oosthuizen.
The South African is also ready to repay the fine hospitality that the tournament organisers have bestowed on him especially after they had arranged for a private jet to fly him from his Florida home in the United States to Seoul.
“I’ve seen a lot of this tournament on television and heard a lot of good things about it from Ernie Els, so it was an easy decision for me to make. Plus they made it even easier for me to come by putting up a plane all the way from the States over here. That was really nice of them,” said Oosthuizen.
“I’m looking forward to the week and looking forward to seeing what challenges the golf course presents when I play the Pro-Am this afternoon. From the range it looks like some of the holes are quite tight off the tee, so it should be a good test,” added the South African.
Meanwhile Korea’s Bae Sang-moon believes he has a chance of becoming the first Korean winner at the Ballantine’s Championship if he can overcome his opening round jitters.
“I flew all the way from the U.S. to take part in the Ballantine's Championship 2013 and my goal is to win the trophy,” said Bae.
“Last year, I had a very poor first round and it had some repercussions in the remaining three rounds.  So this time around, I'm going to put a lot of concentration and focus on the first round,” added Bae, who opened with a 75 last year before having to settle for a tied-20th finish.
Since earning his US PGA Tour card at Qualifying School last year, Bae, who spent his early years honing his skills on the Asian Tour, has been serving notice of his talent to the worldwide audience.
While he has yet to make his breakthrough on the PGA Tour, the three-time Asian Tour winner has enjoyed two top-10 finishes in his rookie year and has already posted one top-10 in the United States this season.
“I'm gaining lots of confidence and I'm in the process of continuously improving. I try not to get too upset with myself after a bad round and I think this is the right way to grow and develop as a player,” said Bae.
Compatriot Kim Kyung-tae, who has featured in every Ballantine’s Championship since its inaugural event in 2008, also remains hopeful that a Korean player can enter the winner’s circle despite the odds stacked against them.
“The European players are more exposed to these windy and cold conditions and they are really good at overcoming these challenges. The greens are also very undulating here and they get to play on similar conditions regularly over in Europe as well,” said Kim, who made his debut on the Asian Tour in 2007 and shot into prominence when he won his maiden title at the Maekyung Open in what was only his second event on Tour.
“I think if we can overcome those putting conditions and wind conditions, we’ll stand a good chance of winning. I've been playing in the Ballantine’s Championship for six years in a row already and I really want to win it very badly,” said Kim.
The sixth edition of the Ballantine’s Championship will be the first event to be played in Korea on the Asian Tour this season and is once again sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and Korea PGA.
Ends.
About Ballantine’s
Ballantine’s is the No 2 ultra-premium Scotch whisky in Asia, No 1 Scotch whisky in Europe and the range sells over 70 million bottles a year worldwide. Ballantine’s has won more than 129 trophies and medals at international competitions in the past 10 years for quality, as a result of its unique richness of character and perfect balance. The range, from Ballantine’s Finest to the exclusive 40 Year Old, is the most extensive in the world of Scotch and is maintained by the latest in a tradition of Master Blenders that dates back to 1827.
•          Ballantine’s has been title sponsor of the Ballantine’s Championship since 2008
•          Ballantine’s is an official sponsor of the BMW Masters, The Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open & The World Cup of Golf
•          The first Ballantine’s sponsored golf tournament was played in 1960 at Wentworth Golf Club, England
About Chivas Brothers
Chivas Brothers is the Scotch whisky and premium gin business of Pernod Ricard – the world’s co-leader in wine and spirits. Chivas Brothers is the global leader in luxury Scotch whisky and premium gin. Its portfolio includes Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s, Beefeater Gin, The Glenlivet, Royal Salute, Aberlour, Plymouth gin, Longmorn, Scapa, 100 Pipers, Clan Campbell, Something Special and Passport Scotch.
About the Asian Tour
In 2013, the Asian Tour will celebrate a momentous milestone with its 10th season. As the official sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia, the Asian Tour leads the development of golf across the region, enhancing the careers of its members while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of the game. The Asian Tour, through its membership of the International Federation of PGA Tours, is the only recognised pan-Asian professional golf tour in Asia. This unique feature positions the Asian Tour at the pinnacle of professional golf in Asia; providing its events with Official World Ranking status. Tour Partners include Abacus (Official Apparel Partner), BlackBerry (Official Communications Partner), Canon (Official Imaging Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Starwood Hotels and Resorts (Official Hotels and Resorts) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). The Asian Tour has offices in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Also, visit us at www.asiantour.com, www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf, www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf, www.youtube.com/theasiantour and www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf