2004: Newsmakers - Under pressure
Ernie Els left Loch Lomond July 11 facing a possible showdown with PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem over his number of PGA Tour appearances. The South African feels he is under undue pressure to compete more in the United States.
“I class myself as a world player, but they (the PGA Tour) don’t see it that way,” Els said. “If they push me any further, they are going to get into a bit of a dispute. It’s been going on for a while and the Tour knows how I feel.”
“I’m a world player and they have to accept that. If they don’t accept that, there will be problems.”
Els said the Tour treats top foreign players differently.
“Retief (Goosen) only plays in 15 over there in America and then he plays wherever he wants,” Els said, “but I have to ask them for a release to play out of America. But that’s not going to happen for much longer.
“It’s the same for Tiger. He’s under more pressure to play in more tournaments. I can understand that from the Tour’s point of view and sponsors, but they have to remember that we are independents.”