Els hoping players warm up to Wentworth


Ernie Els hopes not to be cursed under the collective breath of the field at this week's BMW PGA Championship.

Els, who completed a redesign of the Wentworth Club's West Course for the 2010 event, has been heavily criticized for his work the last two years. He hopes the complaints will subside this year.

'The way it was put forward the first year was a little childish,' he said Tuesday of the public bashing, 'but hopefully we'll have more smiling faces from the players this year.'

The South African realizes reworking the host course to the European Tour's flagship event would invite backlash.

'You're not going to please everybody,' he said, 'but I don't believe everybody should criticize just because there's changes.'

Revisions have again been made this year to Els' work. The 12th hole was converted back to a par 5. At No. 18, rough was added around the green at the par-5 closer to prevent balls from spinning into the guarding water hazard.

Lee Westwood was a victim last year in the playoff with Luke Donald with the world No. 1 ranking on the line.Two weeks ago at The Players, Westwood indicated he respects the added difficulty to Wentworth he panned two years ago.

'They are both very good tests,' Westwood said comparing Els' work to TPC Sawgrass' Stadium Course. 'Wentworth - since Ernie's redesigned it - it's a lot tougher.'