Caddy credits Els’ going teetotaller for The Open success

Updated: Jul 24, 2012, 16:32 PM IST

London: Ernie Els, the winner of the Open Championship, had quit taking alcohol in order to concentrate on his golfing career, according to his caddy, Ricci Roberts.

Els, who used to be a hard drinker once, and even used to boast of having more booze in his private jet than fuel, gave up alcohol more than two months before his dramatic triumph at Royal Lytham on Sunday.

“We were having dinner one night a couple of months ago, when Ernie suddenly announced: ‘I’m not going to bother having a glass of wine tonight.’ And, I haven’t seen him touch a drop since,” The Sun quoted Roberts, as saying.

“Even when he was handed a glass of champagne after he won the Open, I didn’t see him take a single sip,” he added.

“I know he said he wants to meet Nelson Mandela again to share a drink from the claret jug, but there’s a good chance it might be filled with Diet Coke! I’m not saying the big man has gone soft — just that he’s become a little more sensible than the rest of us,” he said.