SA's Ernie Els now plays a limited schedule on the European Tour. Photo: Michael Sherman (ANA)

JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s Ernie Els rose 103 spots in the world rankings to 424th following his 12th place finish in the Dubai Desert Classic on Sunday.

The former world number-one Els was one shot off the lead at the halfway stage after rounds of 68 and 65. On the weekend, however, the four-time Major champion could only manage scores of 70 and 71 for a 14-under total. American Bryson Dechambeau won by seven shots  on 24-under.

For the 49-year-old Els who now plays a limited schedule on the European Tour, it was just his second top-15 finish in the last four seasons. 

Ernie Els tees off on the 13th hole during the third round of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic , United Arab Emirates on Saturday. Photo: EPA/Neville Hopwood
Ernie Els tees off on the 13th hole during the third round of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic , United Arab Emirates on Saturday. Photo: EPA/Neville Hopwood

In contrast, countryman Justin Harding finished strongly with a scintillating final round nine-under 63 to end on 15-under in a share of seventh. It marked Harding’s first million rand payday on the European Tour with his R1 030 532 cheque. 

The 32-year-old also moved up seven spots to a career-high 80th in the world rankings following his strong play. 

African News Agency (ANA)


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