Goosen complained about Asian crowd last week

Updated: April 29, 2005, 10:54 AM ET
Reuters

SHANGHAI, China -- Ernie Els wants metal detectors to be used to prevent golf fans from disturbing players with their mobile phones.

The No. 3 player in the world called for action after being disturbed several times during his second round at the Asian Open in Shanghai on Friday.

"It would be great," said Els. "It will take a lot more manpower and money at events to organize but ... I'm sure if you asked the players then the majority would agree."

It hasn't been a good month for Chinese golf fans. Last week at the Johnnie Walker Classic in Beijing, Retief Goosen complained about fans using cameras.

Els, after carding a 10-under-par 62 to go four strokes clear at halfway, was distracted twice while standing over a putt on the sixth green when a woman's phone went off.

Unaware of her breach of etiquette, she simply slipped the phone back into her bag. The South African then missed the putt.

"It seems like everyone has a mobile phone and they get really excited about the game and seeing their favorite players," said Els.

"It is a bit of a distraction. You want a bit of quiet over the ball."

Metal detectors and X-ray machines were used at the U.S. Masters earlier this month.

In China, more than 330 million people own mobile phones. Changing their habits may prove difficult.

"If they had the metal detectors at the U.S. Masters this year, I can't believe that the American fans were happy about it," said golf fan Jiang Rili, 25. "Nobody likes to be parted from their mobile."

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