Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

I Haven't Given Up Hope of a Major -Westwood

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

I Haven't Given Up Hope of a Major -Westwood

Article excerpt

Byline: CHRIS ROBINSON

LEE Westwood tees off in the 147th Open championship at Carnoustie today insisting: "I still think there's a major championship inside me."

The 45-year-old touring professional from Close House holds the record for playing in 20 consecutive Opens, but as in all majors, is "forever the bridesmaid, but never the bride."

In 2010, he was runner-up in the Open at St Andrews, but accused of not being a "good finisher."

In 2013, after 54 holes at Muirfield, he led by two strokes from Tiger Woods and Hunter Mahan, but failed to win the coveted Claret Jug.

He said: "I still think there's a major championship inside me, and I'm looking forward to Carnoustie, which has always been enjoyable, but often a torrid test.

"It'll be more benign this year following the dry weather, but even with fast running fairways, the pot bunkers and Barry Burn must be avoided! "It'll be a greater challenge if the wind really blows. I think this year's championship could be the most exciting and closely contested for many years."

Of his own game, Westwood said: "I've been working hard on the driving range, and I'm managing to transfer most of it onto the golf course. At Carnoustie, you have to keep the ball on the fairway, as the long grass in the rough, like all links courses, can be very difficult to get out of.

"There'll be some long drives, but as ever it boils down to putting. I'm happy with the greens, which after being heavily watered, are good to land and putt on. I love playing at Carnoustie, in front of the large knowledgeable crowds."

Westwood's tee-off time for the first round today is 12.20 pm, partnering Michael Hendry (New Zealand), and Kelly Kraft (USA).

Chris Paisley, Westwood's Northumbrian compatriot from Stocksfield, has not qualified for the 156-man Open field. It was wrongly thought he would qualify as the 2018 South African Open champion. …

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