2002 British Open: Els Survives 4-Man Playoff

Ernie Els makes his victory speech as Peter Dawson looks on after the 2002 British Open at Muirfield
David Cannon/Getty Images

The playoff rule in the British Open at this time was this: four holes in length, cumulative scoring. And in 2002, that four-hole playoff was contested by four golfers.

Ernie Els, Thomas Levet, Steve Elkington and Stuart Appleby comprised the quartet of playoff participants. Els birdied the 17th hole of the final round to get himself into the playoff. And in that playoff, Ernie was steady-as-he-goes, recording par at all four holes.

Elkington and Appleby were both 1-over in the extra holes, while Levet birdied early and could have won the Claret Jug with a par on the fourth extra hole. But he bogied, so Levet and Els had to keep playing. When, on the fifth extra hole, Els got up and down from a greenside bunker, he was the 2002 British Open winner.

The third round of this championship was played in truly miserable conditions, cold and wet. How bad was it? Tiger Woods carded an 81 that day, the worst score of his career to that point.

2002 British Open Scores

Results and prize money (USD) from the 2002 British Open, played at Muirfield (par 71) in Gullane, Scotland (p-won playoff; a-amateur):

p-Ernie Els, South Africa, $1,106,14070-66-72-70--278
Thomas Levet, France, $452,99172-66-74-66--278
Stuart Appleby, Australia, $452,99173-70-70-65--278
Steve Elkington, Australia, $452,99171-73-68-66--278
Gary Evans, England, $221,22872-68-74-65--279
Padraig Harrington, Ireland, $221,22869-67-76-67--279
Shigeki Maruyama, Japan, $221,22868-68-75-68--279
Peter O'Malley, Australia, $122,46672-68-75-65--280
Scott Hoch, United States, $122,46674-69-71-66--280
Retief Goosen, South Africa, $122,46671-68-74-67--280
Thomas Bjorn, Denmark, $122,46668-70-73-69--280
Sergio Garcia, Spain, $122,46671-69-71-69--280
Soren Hansen, Denmark, $122,46668-69-73-70--280
Davis Love III, United States, $78,61571-72-71-67--281
Nick Price, Zimbabwe, $78,61568-70-75-68--281
Peter Lonard, Australia, $78,61572-72-68-69--281
Justin Leonard, United States, $78,61571-72-68-70--281
Bob Estes, United States, $64,78871-70-73-68--282
Greg Norman, Australia, $64,78871-72-71-68--282
Duffy Waldorf, United States, $64,78867-69-77-69--282
Scott McCarron, United States, $64,78871-68-72-71--282
Chris Riley, United States, $50,56670-71-76-66--283
Toshimitsu Izawa, Japan, $50,56676-68-72-67--283
Mark O'Meara, United States, $50,56669-69-77-68--283
Corey Pavin, United States, $50,56669-70-75-69--283
David Duval, United States, $50,56672-71-70-70--283
Justin Rose, England, $50,56668-75-68-72--283
Tiger Woods, United States, $37,92570-68-81-65--284
Pierre Fulke, Sweden, $37,92572-69-78-65--284
Bradley Dredge, Wales, $37,92570-72-74-68--284
Bernhard Langer, Germany, $37,92572-72-71-69--284
Niclas Fasth, Sweden, $37,92570-73-71-70--284
Jerry Kelly, United States, $37,92573-71-70-70--284
Jesper Parnevik, Sweden, $37,92572-72-70-70--284
Loren Roberts, United States, $37,92574-69-70-71--284
Des Smyth, Ireland, $37,92568-69-74-73--284
Neal Lancaster, United States, $26,73271-71-76-67--285
Ian Woosnam, Wales, $26,73272-72-73-68--285
Darren Clarke, Northern Ireland, $26,73272-67-77-69--285
Stephen Leaney, Australia, $26,73271-70-75-69--285
Andrew Coltart, Scotland, $26,73271-69-74-71--285
Scott Verplank, United States, $26,73272-68-74-71--285
Esteban Toledo, Mexico, $21,72873-70-75-68--286
Steve Jones, United States, $21,72868-75-73-70--286
Trevor Immelman, South Africa, $21,72872-72-71-71--286
Carl Pettersson, Sweden, $21,72867-70-76-73--286
Paul Eales, England, $18,96273-71-76-67--287
Jeff Maggert, United States, $18,96271-68-80-68--287
Rocco Mediate, United States, $18,96271-72-74-70--287
Warren Bennett, England, $16,22371-68-82-67--288
Mikko Ilonen, Finland, $16,22371-70-77-70--288
Fredrik Andersson, Sweden, $16,22374-70-74-70--288
Ian Poulter, England, $16,22369-69-78-72--288
Bob Tway, United States, $16,22370-66-78-74--288
Shingo Katayama, Japan, $16,22372-68-74-74--288
Barry Lane, England, $16,22374-68-72-74--288
Ian Garbutt, England, $16,22369-70-74-75--288
Craig Perks, New Zealand, $16,22372-70-71-75--288
Stewart Cink, United States, $14,69671-69-80-69--289
Steve Stricker, United States, $14,69669-70-81-69--289
Richard Green, Australia, $14,69672-72-75-70--289
Paul Lawrie, Scotland, $14,69670-70-78-71--289
Nick Faldo, England, $14,69673-69-76-71--289
Kenichi Kuboya, Japan, $14,69670-73-73-73--289
Joe Durant, United States, $14,69672-71-73-73--289
Phil Mickelson, United States, $13,90668-76-76-70--290
Jarrod Moseley, Australia, $13,90670-73-75-72--290
Chris DiMarco, United States, $13,90672-69-75-74--290
Matthew Cort, England, $13,45873-71-78-69--291
Toru Taniguchi, Japan, $13,45871-73-76-71--291
Stephen Ames, Trinidad & Tobago, $13,45868-70-81-72--291
Len Mattiace, United States, $13,45868-73-77-73--291
Jim Carter, United States, $13,45874-70-73-74--291
Mike Weir, Canada, $13,45873-69-74-75--291
Sandy Lyle, Scotland, $13,43268-76-73-75--292
Chris Smith, United States, $13,43274-69-71-78--292
Anders Hansen, Denmark, $13,43271-72-79-71--293
Roger Wessels, South Africa, $13,43272-71-73-77--293
David Park, Wales, $13,43273-67-74-80--294
Lee Janzen, United States, $13,43270-69-84-72--295
Mark Calcavecchia, United States, $13,43274-66-81-74--295
Colin Montgomerie, Scotland, $13,43274-64-84-75--297
David Toms, United States, $13,43267-75-81-75--298


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