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Monday, July 19, 2010

The Limerick Summary: 2010 Open Championship

Winner: Louis Oosthuizen

Around the greater world of golf: Matt Bettencourt won the Reno-Tahoe Open, the PGA's alternate-field event this week; Tommy "Two Gloves" Gainey won the Nationwide's inaugural Chiquita Classic for his second win of the year; and Sun-Ju Ahn won the Stanley Ladies on the JLPGA in a playoff. The Constructivist has that update here.

Louis Oosthuizen with the Claret JugSo the fairy tale is complete. Despite the questions raised about his ability to complete the quest, Shrek has indeed written his own little version of "happily ever after." The fact that this was the 150th Open even adds its own sheen to the victory. Why is it that "years that end in 0" seem so different from the rest, anyway? (The pic comes from the UK Press Association; their short article is here.)

What really struck me about his win that he did it from Day 1. Unlike the other players, most of whom had a good round followed by a bad round, Louis played four good rounds. Posting 65-67-69-71 as the weather and pressure became tougher is solid play in anybody's book -- especially when you take the lead during the second round and never give it up. He won by 7 strokes (and was up by 9 halfway through the last round), so anything under par was going to be good!

His closest competitor, Paul Casey, simply couldn't close the 4-stroke gap between them and finished at -8 (T3). Lee Westwood finished solo second, nabbing his fourth straight Top 3 in a major. Rory McIlroy, snakebit by an 80 on Friday, staged a "major" comeback to finish T3 himself. Low American honors went to Sean O'Hair and Nick Watney at -6 (T7). And Jin Jeong, this year's winner of the British Am, won the silver medal for low amateur at -4 (T14).

In related news, Tiger's "Old Faithful," the Scotty Cameron putter that he has won all his majors with, was back in his bag for Sunday. However, his relationship problems continued as his jilted putter refused to play nice, and rumors are already circulating that it has obtained a lawyer and is suing for emotional distress. Rumors are also circulating that Phil is buying property in the gorse just off the 12th fairway for a vacation home, so he can relax with his family between shots.

Perhaps the biggest shock of the week for me was the lack of network coverage for the Open. When was the last time ABC didn't carry the final two rounds? I'm not complaining -- ESPN gave the Open way more coverage than any two networks in the past. Still, this may portend economic stormclouds on golf's horizon.

Of course, Oosthuizen's name itself has been a story this week. I suspect the problem is simply that we don't have a direct equivalent in English for the sounds they use in Africaans. For example, when I was taking Tae Kwon Do, I discovered that Koreans have no equivalent for the "i" in Mike. When they wrote my name in Korean, they actually used two syllables that sounded like "mah-eek."

I suspect it's something similar for Louis's last name. The "ooh" is probably "oo-eh" run together, which could make the first syllable sound like "woost" or "west," but should probably be something like "ooh-west" run together. And that second syllable should probably be something like "hah-ee," which when run together could sound like "hay" or "hy." Try saying "ooh-west-(hah-ee)-zen" as 3 syllables and you'll probably be pretty close.

Just for the record, my attempt sounds like "Oowist-high-zen." (Imagine the word "twist" starting with "oo" instead of "t." It does sound like one syllable.)

In time I suppose the media will discover the true pronunciation of Louis's name. For today, it just becomes grist for the Limerick Summary mill:
West-hay-zen? Woost-hy-zen? Oost-hay-zen?
Whatever… his play was amazin'!
The guy nicknamed Shrek
Grabbed this win by the neck
To choke off much worse paraphrasin'.


  1. You're going to have to start moving your limericks around in the articles. I've become the little kid who flips the box of cereal to get to the prize at the bottom of the box. :-)

  2. Well, besides not making as big a mess, at least it doesn't take two weeks to go back and "eat the cereal." ;-)

  3. Very true - and I do go back and read...but it's always straight to the bottom for the Limerick.

  4. I take that as a huge compliment. Thanks, Court!