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McDowell 'turning a corner'


Graeme McDowell

Graeme McDowell

Graeme McDowell

Graeme McDowell has only to think back a year not to panic about his current form with his defence of the US Open just over a month away.

After the best 10 months of his career McDowell has missed three of his last four halfway cuts.

But before the start of the £5.8million Players Championship - golf's richest event - in Florida on Thursday the Northern Irishman said: "I look at this time last year and I hadn't done much either. I'm trying to stay patient and I feel like I'm turning the corner."

McDowell is fifth in the world, but his chances this week are bound to be boosted by the absence of number one Lee Westwood and sixth-ranked Rory McIlroy, his fellow countryman.

"I've heard it called the fifth major and you expect the world's best players to be here, but I completely understand that guys choose not to play it," he added.

"The top players in the world play against each other many times in a season nowadays, with the majors and WGCs (World Golf Championships) and the many great events around the world.

"I know Rory doesn't particularly like the course - he's missed the cut here the last couple years - and guys have got to do what's best for them.

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"It is a little bit of a selfish sport sometimes. Guys have got to pick their schedule revolved around what they want to achieve in the game.

"I'm about to play six of the next seven weeks right now, so it's a busy time - guys have got a lot of golf ahead of them.

"Lee has just played a lot of golf in Asia (he played twice and won twice) and he doesn't really want to fly over here and play a lot of golf. An event with this prestige to not have the world's best player here is disappointing, but he has his own agendas."

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