Photo via Omar Rawlings/Flickr

Ladies and gentlemen, the most painful 25 seconds in the history of golf

It's not unlike a scene from 'Happy Gilmore.'

Feb 29, 2020, 9:00 am*

Internet Culture


Josh Katzowitz

Ernie Els used to be a hellaciously good golfer. He’s won 19 career PGA Tour tournaments, 28 European Tour titles, and four major titles. He’s so damn good at golf that he’s made more than $66 million at it.

But he hasn’t won a PGA Tour title since 2012, and he’s been shut out of any kind of European Tour championship since 2013.

And on Thursday, during the first round of the Masters, Els gave us the most uncomfortable 30 seconds of golf you’ll ever see. You don’t even need the Benny Hill or Curb Your Enthusiasm theme songs to understand just how painful this is.

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Yes, that’s a freakin’ seven-putt, which, on the PGA Tour, is about as rare as the ivory-billed woodpecker. Yes, the Masters greens are considered some of the toughest to navigate on Tour, but this is probably the most horrendous display of putting Augusta National has ever seen (Els ended up carding a 10 on the hole).

Els ranks 91st on the PGA Tour in total putting and 123rd in putting average. When it comes to putts that measured at 3 feet, he—and after watching that video, this shouldn’t surprise you—ranks 172nd.

So yeah, Els is basically the worst at putting—relatively speaking, of course. Do you need more examples of his ineptitude? Oh, we’ve got more examples.

Fortunately for Els, there have been worse putting displays. All you need to do is ask longtime golf writer Dan Jenkins.

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*First Published: Apr 7, 2016, 7:58 pm