Ernie Els running out of time for another major win

Ernie Els reacts as he walks down the ninth fairway during a practice round for the U.S. Open at...

Ernie Els reacts as he walks down the ninth fairway during a practice round for the U.S. Open at the Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa., June 11, 2013. (ADAM HUNGER/Reuters)

JON McCARTHY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:53 PM ET

ARDMORE, PA. - As afternoon turned to evening on the eve of the U.S. Open, Ernie Els was getting in some final preparation.

The defending British Open champion was strolling around Merion Golf Club's famed East Course by himself. His tee shot at the drivable par-4 10th hole bounced off the turf before hitting a spotter in the butt. The small group of fans on the hole had a laugh and as Els walked by a few of them shouted words of encouragement to the big South African.

"Get that putter going, Ernie!"

"Are you going to win this week?"

Els glanced over at the fans and chuckled.

Life is good for Els. A year ago, things were not nearly as rosy.


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