Skip to main content

Els in rant at Wentworth officials over state of greens as Donald leads the way

May 26, 2012 -- Updated 1727 GMT (0127 HKT)
Ernie Els completes his third round 70 at Wentworth but was critical of the state of the course in his later press conference.
Ernie Els completes his third round 70 at Wentworth but was critical of the state of the course in his later press conference.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Ernie Els criticizes officials over state of greens at Wentworth
  • Els masterminded re-design of West Course where PGA Championship held
  • Defending champion Luke Donald leads after third round of 69 for 11-under 205
  • Donald set to return to World No.1 in place of Rory McIlroy

(CNN) -- A furious Ernie Els blasted Wentworth officials over the condition of the course he redesigned after completing his third round at the PGA Championship Saturday.

The popular South African moved into a tie for fourth behind leader Luke Donald after a solid two-under 70 in blustery conditions on the West Course.

But rather than talk about his admittedly slim chances of victory, Els only wanted to bemoan the state of most of the greens, which he described as "virtually unplayable," due to a lack of watering.

He told the official European Tour website: "It's such a pity as so much work and effort has been put in.

"I wish the Tour and the green staff would put more moisture in, I have asked them, begged them to do it but obviously they see it differently.

"It's a never-ending story around here," he complained.

I wish the Tour and the green staff would put more moisture in, I have asked them, begged them to do it but obviously they see it differently
Ernie Els

Els, who owns a property near the course, was commissioned by Wentworth owner Richard Caring to make radical changes back in 2010 and not all have been greeted with acclaim by leading players, particularly those to the par-five 18th.

The 42-year-old, who won the World Match Play tournament seven times at Wentworth, had to use all his expertise and local knowledge to move up the leaderboard.

Els was one of only 10 players to be under par, with Donald, set to reclaim the world number one spot, finishing with a birdie on the final hole for a joint best of the day three-under 69 for 11-under 205.

Fellow Englishman Justin Rose also shot a 69 to trail by two shots going into the final round where he will be paired with Donald.

The defending championship needs to finish in the top eight to leapfrog Rory McIlroy, who missed the cut at the European Tour's flagship event.

Donald first attained the ranking thanks to his 2011 victory and despite losing the No.1 spot since has shown incredible consistency.

"It will be a proud moment personally to go a whole year and still be at the top of the world rankings," he told BBC Sport.

"But obviously my main focus is to try to win the tournament."

Ireland's Peter Lawrie challenged him at the top of the leaderboard until dropping shots on the back nine to be third on seven-under.

Els, fellow South Africans Richard Sterne and Branden Grace and former British Open champion Paul Lawrie shared fourth, but six shots behind Donald.

Overnight leader James Morrison of England slumped to an 81 to go back to three-under.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
July 9, 2014 -- Updated 1218 GMT (2018 HKT)
The next generation of golfers just keeps on getting younger. "They have the confidence to perform against their idols," says one ex-prodigy.
July 1, 2014 -- Updated 1159 GMT (1959 HKT)
He was Spain's ultimate matador and golf's greatest escape artist.
June 18, 2014 -- Updated 1536 GMT (2336 HKT)
Rory McIlroy has announced he wants to represent Ireland at the Rio Olympics in 2016.
Two-time major champion Rory McIlroy declares he'll represent Ireland at the Rio Olympics, not Great Britain.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 0248 GMT (1048 HKT)
Already admired by Annika Sorenstam and with a bucketful of talent, New Zealand's Lydia Ko has the world of golf at her feet.
April 28, 2014 -- Updated 1130 GMT (1930 HKT)
Mike O'Connor, UK FootGolf
Like footie? Partial to a bit of golf? Then you'll love FootGolf. The sport's growing fan base includes a host of former English Premier League stars.
April 24, 2014 -- Updated 1343 GMT (2143 HKT)
Golfers at at Barkway Park don't seem to concerned and have been taking pictures and videos of the bird when it appears on the greens and fairways.
A runaway ostrich-like bird hiding near an English golf course has caused quite a stir. Some say it's dangerous, while others are cashing in.
April 22, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Eagles may be thin on the ground for most golfers at the Bear Trace course at Harrison Bay. But up in the treetops, it's a different matter.
April 18, 2014 -- Updated 1754 GMT (0154 HKT)
When someone tells you to go jump in a lake, sometimes it's best to take their advice. "I've never been so scared," says golfer Pablo Larrazabal.
Bubba Watson is the Masters king, but can he win a major away from Augusta? Living Golf's Shane O'Donoghue has the lowdown.
April 15, 2014 -- Updated 1412 GMT (2212 HKT)
Arnold Palmer
Arnold Palmer won his first major at Augusta, played there with the U.S. President and made a record 50 consecutive Masters appearances.
April 10, 2014 -- Updated 1202 GMT (2002 HKT)
He is remembered for designing one of the world's most famous golf courses, but the man behind Augusta died pleading to be paid.
April 10, 2014 -- Updated 1004 GMT (1804 HKT)
Take a trip around Augusta. From Eisenhower's toppled tree to the fiendishly-difficult Amen Corner, the Masters' home venue has it all.
ADVERTISEMENT