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Els pulls out of Match Play for family reasons

World number three Ernie Els has withdrawn from next week's Match Play Championship for personal reasons.

"Unfortunately, and with much regret, this year's WGC-Accenture Match Play falls on the week preceding Samantha, my daughter, beginning her first year of school in London," the South African said in a statement on Friday.

"As every parent knows, this is a milestone in the life of a child, and I therefore have chosen to share this time with my daughter and family."

The Match Play Championship is limited to the top 64 players in the world.

Els is the second player to withdraw following world number 42 Kirk Triplett and he will be replaced by Japan's Shingo Katayama. Briny Baird took Triplett's place.

World number one Tiger Woods is the defending Match Play champion.

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