Ernie Els and his Callaway Golf Clubs | Callaway Golf Equipment

If there is a professional golfer most responsible for the collective angst shared by amateur golfers as to just how difficult the game actually is, then it is arguably Ernie Els. Watching the big South African play the game is beguiling. His languid, flowing swing seems effortless end entirely natural.

It has earned him the nickname The Big Easy and the results of his swing are usually spectacular. Els is only too aware of how his game appears to others, stating:

“I’ve never been a very technical player. I don’t get caught up in swing positions and mechanics. When I work on my swing…I’m looking for feels. You’ll get better results – and often more distance- if you swing at eighty percent effort. I get all kinds of people telling me I have the best swing in the world- it’s beautiful, it’s effortless. But I know when that isn’t true.”

His career has spanned four decades since he turned professional in 1989. He has achieved 64 wins as a professional, including 18 on the PGA Tour and 26 on the European tour. He has won the US Open twice (1994 and 1997) and also lifted the British Open in 2002. He’s finished 2nd in the Masters twice (2000 and 2004) as well as tied third in the USPGA Championships (1995, 2007). Furthermore, he is a newly inducted member into the World Golf Hall of Fame as of May 2011.

By his own lofty standards 2011 was something of a disappointing year for Ernie and he’ll be looking to bounce back in 2012, and these are the clubs in his bag that he will intend to do that with.



The Driver: Callaway Protype Tour Driver

Els has only recently changed from the Diablo Octane Black driver, which he used from 2010 to late summer 2011 and on his outstanding website, Ernie states that it was “probably the best driver I’ve ever used.” However when his sponsors Callaway brought out the new prototype, Els was amongst the first to test it. “It’s an incredible club – powerful but with good feedback for the better golfer. I’m sure you’ll see it in a pro shop near you in the not-too-distant future and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it as much as I do,” claims the big South African.


Fairway Woods/Hybrids: Callaway X-Fairway Metals 3 Wood (15 deg loft)

Callaway X-Fairway Metals 5 Wood (19 deg loft)

“I’m really happy with the fairway metals that Callaway have put in my hands,” writes Ernie. “These two models give me the perfect spread of yardages.” Ernie currently hits his 3-wood around 255 yards and his 5-wood around 230. The tour models of the X-Fairway range from Callaway have slightly smaller clubheads and the weight of the head is distributed cleverly throughout the club to increase accuracy, forgiveness and add distance.


Irons 2 to PW: Callaway RAZR X Forged Irons                                                

Ernie has his shafts on his irons a half an inch longer than standard, to help accommodate his 6ft 3” frame and he is one of the pro’s on tour that doesn’t use a hybrid club, instead preferring his trusty two iron. What is intriguing for the amateur is seeing how far Els hits his irons: the big South African smacks his 2-iron 8 yards beyond where he hits his 5-wood at 238 yards and his fluid swing sees him hit a 9-iron 152 yards.


Wedges: Callaway X-Series Jaws CC Wedges (52 and 60 deg lofts)

Ernie has two utility wedges in his bag most weeks, one of 52 degrees loft and a 60 degree loft. Both his wedges were designed by Roger Cleveland, Callaway’s chief designer and featured the new Tour CC Grooves that meet the new tour regulations. “They’ve got that classic tear-drop shape which I really like,” stated Ernie. “Feel of the club face is perfect; quite soft and I get plenty of spin.”




Putter: Odyssey White Hot Belly Putter

Since Ernie made the switch from the conventional putter to the belly putter in summer 2011, he has used the Odyssey White Hot club on the greens. “I must confess I’ve mixed things up pretty good and tried several models!” Els states. “This one could be a keeper though.” Els revealed that after making the change to the belly putter he is feeling more confident over the ball and that his stroke is now more consistent.


Golf ball: Callaway Tour i(s) Golf Ball

Ernie sums up the qualities of the Callaway ball perfectly on his website: “The new Tour i(s) ball is unbelievable. It’s the ball I’ve been waiting for,” he writes. “It has great stopping power around the greens and at the same time is long off the tee.” Perhaps the hole-in-one Ernie achieved at the HSBC Champions Tournament in Shanghai in 2010, in only his second day of using the ball, helped form his opinion!


Images by Ernie Els Facebook PageSD Dirk



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