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I'll do whatever it takes to get back to game's summit: G-Mac

By Phil Casey

Former US Open champion Graeme McDowell concedes he faces a long road back to the top. The Ulsterman was ranked as high as fourth in the world in 2011 and 53rd shortly after his last tournament victory in the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in November 2015.

But the Ryder Cup star slipped back down the rankings last year after missing 13 cuts and is ranked 91st ahead of his first event of 2017 in this week's Qatar Masters.

G-Mac admits he has been distracted by starting a family, but the 37-year-old from Portrush insists he is motivated to recapture the form which produced 10 European Tour titles and three Ryder Cup victories.

"It has not been the kind of few years that I expect from myself," McDowell said. "There's no doubt that there have been some factors which have been distracting and I wouldn't change it for the world. Having a family is something I've always wanted.

"Coming to the start of the next few years, I've tried to view it as a long road back toward the top. That's where I want to be again, give myself chances to win Majors again. I know I've got a lot of things to work on.

"I've just been rededicating myself and mentally I think it's really important that I stay super patient with it. It may not happen this week or next week but if I keep doing the things that I know are going to make me the best I can be, eventually it will come."

Missing out on a fifth straight Ryder Cup appearance at Hazeltine has given McDowell extra motivation, especially with the 2018 contest taking place at Le Golf National in Paris, where he has won the French Open twice.

"My focus had come back a long time before that Ryder Cup," he added. "Not being on that team was a reinforcement to me that I'm not doing what I want.

"I'm still very, very motivated and I still want it badly enough to do whatever it takes. I'm ready to get the head down for the next five years and see what I can do."

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