Els eager to build on Merion display

6/19/2013 2:24:00 PM
Wladimir Klitschko and Ernie Els  (Getty Images)
Wladimir Klitschko and Ernie Els (Getty Images)
Ernie Els is looking to maintain his good recent form at the BMW Internaitonal Open when he tees up at Golfclub München Eichenried on Thursday.

The South African has finished well in his last two events to finished tied sixth at the BMW PGA Championship and tied fourth at the US Open Championship on Sunday, closing with a brilliant one under par 69 at Merion.

The Open Champion now hopes to continue that upward trend in Munich, although he expects a very different test to the brutal challenge presented in Pennsylvania last week.

“I'm really pleased to be back at Munich and to play in the BMW International Open again,” said Els.

“I've been coming here for a long time, and it's good to be back and obviously we'll have a good week. Hopefully the course is not as tough as Merion – it will be nice to putt for a birdie now and again.

“I've had a couple of mixed results, but I've played well here for the most part. I didn't play too well a couple of years ago right after the US Open at Pebble Beach, but normally I like it here. Partly because, as I say, if you play half decently you can putt for a lot of birdies and actually make a score. 

“You've still got to hit the shots. Although it's easier shots and the shot values are a little bit different than the US Open, you've still got to hit the shot. The course is not going to lie over and die for you. 

“So you have to hit the shots and make the putts. But at least you feel mentally that you've got a better chance of being able to do that. Hopefully it's not 22 under par, but it's going to be low, because it's soft. They have had a lot of rain here, so the course will be soft and when conditions are soft, these guys will make birdies. So try to shoot a 66 every round.”

Els will partner world heavyweight boxing champion Wladimir Klitschko in the tournament Pro-Am on Wednesday, but the 43 year old is not planning to pull his punches when it comes to sharing a few jokes on the course.

“That will be nice,” he added. “I met him once before, and it will be an absolute pleasure to play with him, ask him about a couple of left hooks, a bit of advice! 

“But we'll have a good day this afternoon. Obviously it's his hometown and he's an unbelievable sports figure in the world and it's amazing that golf can bring a lot of different people from across the globe and across different sports zones, so to speak, together. It will be really nice to play with him.”