Both Louis Oosthuizen, the co-designer of La Réserve Golf Links, and Marcel Siem, one of the few professionals to have played it before it hosts this week’s AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open, have predicted that the newest golf course on the island will demand a variety of shots from the golfers gathered for the seventh edition of this Sunshine Tour and DP World Tour event.
In working with renowned golf course architect Peter Matkovich to create this magnificent links-style course, Oosthuizen said he wanted to bring back an element to the professional game he is passionate about.
“I love links golf because I believe in shot-making and I feel there should be more than one way to play a golf course. With links-style golf you’ve got to see the shot, and sometimes it’s not the prettiest shot but it’s the one that will work for you on that particular hole – a lot of shaping and just feeling your way around the golf course. I think in today’s game where it’s often about tee it up and hit it as far as you can, a course like this with the wind here hopefully brings a bit more skill into the game,” he said.
Having played the golf course more than most before this week, Siem concurred that this is exactly what La Réserve Golf Links will demand from the field.
“They’ve done a fantastic job with this golf course,” said Siem, an ambassador of Heritage Golf Club who now lives on the island of Mauritius.
“It will be a tough test. I hope the wind will blow as usual in Mauritius. You have to hit some good shots here, especially when the wind blows. The wind comes off the left most of the time, about 11 or 12 of the holes, so it’s made for a draw player. The fairways and greens are really good, and there are some really tough holes out here.”
The new golf course adds significantly to an AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open that has once again drawn a quality field, including defending champion Antoine Rozner.
“You can’t beat this. It’s just an absolute pleasure to come back here every year. I love the atmosphere in Mauritius and I love the golf courses,” said the Frenchman, whose victory in this event last December led to a memorable rest of the season where he achieved his best finish in a Major of tied 20th in The Open after playing his way into the top five going into the final round.
“My experience of The Open was huge for me. I think that is going to help me a lot for the next chapter of my career. The Majors would be the next step for me, for sure.”
Fellow Frenchman Mattieu Pavon returns to a tournament where he’s also had good finishes, and with the renewed confidence of claiming his first victory on the DP World Tour last season.
“It’s a great experience to come here every year. This is such a beautiful island with some great golf courses, and I think La Réserve Golf Links is very challenging with beautiful views.”
And former AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open champion Dylan Frittelli is back at a tournament that sparked bigger things in his own career.
“My win here in 2017 was huge. I’d played one season on the DP World Tour when I won this event and it propelled me to getting a PGA Tour card the following year, and then I had my win there. Having progressed through the Sunshine Tour, which does a fantastic job with these co-sanctioned events with the DP World Tour, I really look back at this win as having given me those bigger dreams.”
To purchase tickets for the tournament please go to https://www.ticketbox.mu/
The 2023 AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open has once again drawn a glittering array of blue-chip sponsors, including AfrAsia Bank, Rogers Group, Rogers Hospitality, Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority, IBL, Beachcomber Resorts and Hotels, Heritage Villas Valriche, Phoenix Beverages, Jacobs Coffee, Pro Carts, Mautourco, KOHLER, Häagen Dazs and Oxenham.