The Open Championship, or simply The Open (often referred to as the British Open), is the oldest of the four major championships in professional golf. It is the only major held outside the United States and is administered by the R&A, which is the governing body of golf outside of the U.S. and Mexico. Since 1979, The Open has been played on the weekend of the third Friday in July. It is the third major of the calendar year, following The Masters and the U.S. Open, and preceding the PGA Championship. The current champion is Ernie Els who won in 2012 at Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club in Lytham St. Annes, Lancashire. The Open moved to a Sunday finish in 1980; it had a scheduled Saturday finish from 1966 through 1979, with the first round on Wednesday. Prior to 1966, the final two rounds were scheduled for Friday. Before 1926, the four rounds were played in two days. The event takes place annually on one of nine links courses in Scotland or England.