Multiple major winner Ernie Els will roll the dice in Macau for the first time at the US$800,000 Venetian Macau Open in October.
One of only six golfers to have won twice at both the US Open (1994, 1997) and the Open Championship (2002, 2012), Els will look to carry his recent good form, which included a win at the BMW International Open and solid finishes at the last two majors to Macau from October 17-20.
A win at the Asian Tour event would put the South African legend alongside a distinguished list of international stars such as Lee Westwood and Colin Montgomerie, who have each been crowned champion at the tournament which is making a resurgence.
“I am excited to be playing in Macau. I have never been there before but have heard many good things about the tournament as well as the city itself,” he said.
“I like Asia and have enjoyed playing in this part of the world over the years. This spring, I was in Indonesia and Thailand and played well at both tournaments. I hope I will be holding the famous trophy aloft come Sunday,” said Els, who recently accepted an invitation to become an honorary member and international ambassador of the Asian Tour.
Known as “The Big Easy” due to his relaxed demeanour and fluid swing, Els boasts a phenomenal 70 professional career wins around the world, including two on the Asian Tour (2005 BMW Asian Open in China and 2005 Qatar Masters).
The tournament is sanctioned by the Golf Association of Macau and the Asian Tour, and promoted by IMG. Following a successful foray into the world of golf last year, the Venetian recently announced it will return as title sponsor of the event for a second successive year.
Charles Lo, president of the Golf Association of Macau, said: “Ernie Els is a true champion who is well respected around the world. Aspiring young golfers can learn a lot from Ernie’s behaviour both on and off the course, and I hope our upcoming players will take advantage of this opportunity to learn from the great man.”