British Open 2012: Ernie Els Will Build off Surprising Victory

Kyle StanzelCorrespondent IIIJuly 23, 2012

LYTHAM ST ANNES, ENGLAND - JULY 22:  Ernie Els of South Africa poses with the Claret Jug after winning the 141st Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club on July 22, 2012 in Lytham St Annes, England.  (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

The 2012 British Open will unfortunately be known more for the shocking collapse at the expense of Adam Scott than the inspiring victory supplied by Ernie Els.

While Scott suffered a terrible meltdown on the last four holes, Els calmly did what he had to do to win his second career British Open.

Afterwards, according to, Els spoke of a conversation he had with Scott in an attempt to keep the Australian's head up.

I really said to him, 'I'm sorry how things turned out, I told him that I've been there many times and you've just got to bounce back quickly. Don't let this thing linger. So yeah, I feel for him. But thankfully he's young enough.

The 42-year-old Els won his fourth major title in his career and has now won a major in three different decades.

Despite being down six strokes after the front nine on Sunday, Els birdied the par-4 14th and 18th holes and finished the tournament with a 7-under.

The blatant discrepancy in experience between Els and Scott is what allowed the elder South African to capture the Claret Jug.

It is that same experience that will put Els in contention for the PGA Championship when it takes place in South Carolina from August 9-12.

It was evident to all watching on Sunday that Els was as collected and focused as he has been all year. His victory propelled him to No. 7 in the PGA FedEx Cup Standings.

With the RBC Canadian Open and the Bridgestone Invitational left before he embarks for the PGA Championship, Els will look to build on his British Open victory and continue his momentum.

The 2012 British Open should not be remembered for the terrible collapse that cost Adam Scott perhaps the biggest victory of his career.

It should be remembered for the convincing performance that boosted Ernie Els to the Open Championship title and possibly the PGA Championship title.