The unsettled nature of Ernie Els' schedule continued this week as he reported Monday on ErnieEls.com that he'd be taking this week off and not playing the Memorial as he had planned.
Tuesday, that changed.
"He is coming, absolutely," Memorial tournament director Dan Sullivan told Golf World Tuesday morning. "He left London in a plane and is heading this way. Yesterday's website said he was not playing until St. Jude [Stanford St. Jude Championship next week]. Today's website said he was playing Memorial. Some wires must have gotten crossed in his office over there."
It isn't the first time this year Els has changed his mind about playing in a tournament. Els entered the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship at the last minute in February, after originally saying he wouldn't make his 2008 U.S. debut until the Florida swing. A few weeks later, he withdrew on tournament week from the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Last week, Els missed the cut at the BMW PGA Championship at his home course, the Wentworth Club, in England.
"Having had an unscheduled weekend off, I'm obviously keen to get back into the swing of things again," Els says on his website. "Originally, this week was going to be a gap in my schedule, but I've changed my mind and decided to play in the Memorial. It's one of my favorite tournaments of the year and I love Jack's course, Muirfield Village. I figure it'll be a good week to try to get back some positive vibes in my game. I'm really looking forward to it."
"Ernie is very much looking forward to playing in The Memorial," Els' agent, Chubby Chandler, told Golf World. The South African won Jack Nicklaus' tournament in 2004, which until his victory at the Honda Classic in March had been his last victory on U.S. soil.