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Ernie Els Wins the Open Championship After Adam Scott Collapses on Last Four Holes

Ernie Els
Ross Kinnaird, Getty Images

Ernie Els won the British Open Sunday, which is the fourth major championship for the big South African.

But his victory came at the expense of his good friend Adam Scott, who bogeyed the last four holes to lose to Els by a stroke.

Els, who finished seven under par, became the 16th different winner in the last 16 majors. It was the 42-year-old’s second Open Championship, with his first coming in 2002.

Els played a stellar final round, shooting a 68 in windy conditions at Royal Lytham &  St. Annes in Lancashire, England. However, a big part of the story Sunday was Scott’s collapse, much of which took place after Els had completed his round.

“I’m a little numb at the moment,” Els said before excepting the Claret Jug trophy. “First of all, I feel for Adam Scott. He’s a great friend of mine. Obviously, we both wanted to win very badly. But you know, that’s the nature of the beast. That’s why we’re out here. You win, you lose.”

“I had it in my hands with four to go,” Scott explained. “I managed to hit a poor shot on each of the closing four holes. Look, I played so beautifully for most of the week. I shouldn’t let this bring me down.”

Tiger Woods, who had been in contention for most of the tournament, was done in by a triple-bogey on the sixth hole and ended up finishing tied for third at three-under with Brandt Snedeker.

Els became the 27th man in golf history to win a fourth major. As for Scott, the 32-year old Australian still has the bittersweet label of being one the best players in the world never to have won a major championship.


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