Oosthuizen birdies last two holes to win

Louis Oosthuizen overcame a bogey on No. 16 with two closing birdies to capture the Volvo Golf Champions for the second consecutive year by one stroke over Branden Grace at Durban Country Club in Durban, South Africa.

It marked the fourth straight year that Oosthuizen, who won the 2010 Open Championship at St. Andrews, opened with a victory on home soil.

“After my tee shot on 16, I was lucky that I could chip it out and nearly made a great par,” said Oosthuizen, who closed with a 4-under-par 68 that included an eagle on the eighth hole. “But when I stood over the ball on 17, I saw that Branden had made birdie on 18 so I knew that second shot was crucial to give myself a good opportunity and I hit it really close.

“And then 18, everyone thinks you just need to make a birdie, but around that green it’s not easy and luckily I was far enough past where I could pitch it back into the grain and get it close. … I finished strong and I’m just happy that I got it done. It’s an awesome start for the year. Confidence-wise it’s great.”

Grace, another South African who has four victories on the European Tour, birdied two of his last three holes to also shoot 68 and watched on television in the clubhouse as Oosthuizen hit his ball to within about two feet of the hole on Nos. 17 and 18 for the deciding birdies.

Overnight leader Tommy Fleetwood of England closed with a 72 and tied for third with Joost Luiten of the Netherlands, who had a 71.

Three-time major champion Padraig Harrington of Ireland finished with a 67 to tie for fifth.

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