Dec 28th, 2017
Ernie Els gets early Christmas present from Augusta National
But it's not a Masters exemption
Christmas came early for Ernie Els, as on Christmas Eve he received a letter from Augusta National inviting him to the 2018 Masters. But it was sadly not an exemption as Ernie clarified on Boxing Day via Twitter.
HIs five-year exemption for the Masters, which he earned though his 2012 Open Championship victory when Adam Scott collapsed, expired this year so it was looking like the 2017 Masters was to be his last appearance after 23 showings.
However, Ernie will only be a guest at the event, and won't necessarily be playing.
Ernie's not ruling himself out yet, and maybe he may just another tilt at a title that he has come second in twice - in 2000 and 2004. But as World No 592 the Top 50 route is one that is clearly not open to him.
Either way, Ernie will be at The Masters in one capacity or another, and we know which side of the ropes we'd like to see him on.