Els tops SA finishers at US Open- 18 Jun 2012 00:00:00
Former SA number one Ernie Els was the best South African finisher at the US Open, finishing tied 9th at the 112th edition of the annual competition, which was won by Webb Simpson.
It was a maiden major victory for the American, who beat Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell and fellow American Michael Thompson by one shot.
Starting the final round three strokes off the lead, Els closed with a 2-over par 72 to finish in a tie for ninth position, and earning $200,280 (R1.65m) for his efforts.
Els's long-time rival and fellow two-time US Open-winner, Retief Goosen, finished in a tie for 10th after rebounding from an opening round of 5-over par. Goosen finished the weekend with $163,594 (R1.35m).
Charl Schwartzel, who will be taking a break from the game for a month due to a nagging rib injury, finished tied 38th on 10-over par, claiming $44,144 (R365,000) prize money.
Branden Grace, who was a late entrant into the tournament, was the fourth and final SA player to make the cut, who finished the four-days tied for 51st on 13-over par, claiming $24,912 (R206,000) in earnings.
Louis Oosthuizen, Tim Clark, George Coetzee and Trevor Immelman all missed the cut.