The Gallery.


English golfer Rebecca Hudson was horrified to find her golf ball lying within a dead branch from a palm tree next to the tenth green at Selborne in the final round of the SA Women’s Open. And a strong wind was blowing the branch about, so she was faced with a moving ball. When the branch stopped moving, a rules official gave her the bad news: she must play the ball as it lies, or deem it unplayable and take a penalty drop.

Natural objects such as dead branches are loose impediments,

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Just like old times.

Who was Ernie Els talking to on his cell phone on the practice green at Royal Lytham late on Sunday afternoon at the Open? Business icon and friend of 23 years, Johann Rupert. And what were they talking about? How Adam Scott was playing the 72nd hole, «I said, ‘Listen you idiot, stop messing around on the phone. Go hit some practice putts/» Rupert said from his home near London later that night.

In January Rupert introduced Els to Dr Sherylle Calder, the sports vision specialist who works with the Springbok rugby team. They were playing at Fancourt in the

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Ernies secret weapon.

The games that Ernie played on his laptop paid of at the Open. This is why.

Ernie Els has his laptop to thank for winning another major. Not his caddie or his equipment. Not his fitness work ethic or his coach (especially since he barely has one). They might all play a part, but the real secret to success have been the hundreds of hours since January that he has spent staring into the screen of his computer playing games like a teenager.

Now what you expected to hear? These, of course, aren’t ordinary games, they’re scientific ones designed to

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Behind the scenes. Weird bot wonderful happenings in golf.

It has been a weird rime in South African golf since our last issue. I’ve been bemused by the following four events: Ernie Els wins the Open 10 years after his previous major victory; a British tabloid confirms that Ernie has given up drinking alcohol; heavy snowfalls turn Gautcng courses into white wonderlands; and Huddle Park is to be reopened as a golf facility in 2013, Is the world turning upside down?

Ernie, ever since his younger days, has always been a social person who loves a drink with his mates. There are legendary stories of all-night parties at Fancourt

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