SANDWICH, England — Louis Oosthuizen produced an amazing two months of golf, contending in three consecutive major championships and joining a short list of players to finish top-3 in three of them in a single year.
He simply has no hardware to show for it.
Oosthuizen, 38, the 2010 Open winning at St. Andrews, had the 54-hole lead at Royal St. George’s but failed to put together the round necessary to win his second major championship on Sunday.
Collin Morikawa, 24, shot a final-round 66 to win his second major championship while Oosthuizen could manage just a 71 to finish in a tie for third with Jon Rahm, four shots back. Oosthuizen declined to speak after the round, but congratulated the fans and Morikawa via Twitter.
“Well, I do know one thing, the fans @TheOpen are second (or third) to none. Thank you for the incredible support this week, and congrats to @collin_morikawa who played with class and grit today. Well done mate.”
On Saturday, when Oosthuizen held a one-shot advantage over Morikawa, he spoke of his goal for Sunday’s final round.
“Go one better,” he said. “You know, finishing second isn’t great. So I will play my heart out tomorrow and see if I can lift the Claret Jug again.”
Oosthuizen held the lead after each of the first three rounds and set an Open 36-hole scoring record of 129. But it was not to be for him again.
Oosthuizen bogeyed the fourth hole to fall into a tie with Morikawa and a big change occurred at the par-5 seventh, where Morikawa’s birdie coupled with Oosthuzien’s bogey meant a two shot advantage. Morikawa then birdied the eighth and ninth holes as well and found Jordan Spieth, who finished second, his main competition.
Since winning The Open, Oosthuizen has six runner-up finishes in major championships, including the PGA Championship where he finished two shots behind Phil Mickelson and last month’s U.S. Open, where he finished a stroke back of Rahm.