Ernie Els has confirmed his attendance in next week’s Qatar Masters, the second leg of the Race to Dubai’s ‘Gulf Swing’.  

The South African, who finished in a tie for sixth at the Mercedes-Benz Championship last week, will attempt to claim back the title he won in 2005.

The Qatar Masters will be played at the 7,388-yard Doha Golf Club, but big-hitting Ernie will face strong opposition from a 120-man field.  

Defending champion Adam Scott, Sergio Garcia, Henrik Stenson and Retief Goosen, will all be bidding to win the event, and boost their Race to Dubai standings.   

Gallery: Race to Dubai favourites

But, Els is confident of coming good this season after a disappointing 2008 by his own high standards, and cited his putting as a key area for improvement.

Els revealed: “I’ve been working with Bob Rotella on some new ideas. We came up with a routine which helps get me comfortable over the ball.

“Overall I’d say I’m trying to putt like I did in my 20s. It’s starting to feel pretty comfortable and I putted well in my last few tournaments of the year. If I can build on that then 2009 should be a good year for me.”

Where next?

Tour news: Europe unable to reach Ryder Cup captain decision
Betting: Abu Dhabi Golf Championship betting
Equipment: New golf clubs for 2009