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Westwood dismisses his Open bid

By Robert Jones

He may have finished in the top three in three of the last five Open Championships, but Lee Westwood holds out little hope of another good performance at Hoylake next week.

Westwood bogeyed the 72nd hole to miss out on a play-off at Turnberry in 2009, was a distant second to Louis Oosthuizen at St Andrews in 2010 and of course finished third at Muirfield last year after taking a two-shot lead into the final round.

That meant the former world number one has a record eight top-three finishes in major championships without winning one.

Westwood also finished seventh at Augusta in April and won in Malaysia the following week, but made it three missed cuts in succession with rounds of 72 and 73 in the Scottish Open at Royal Aberdeen.

"It's not links practice I need, it's just practice in general," a downbeat Westwood said yesterday.

"It wouldn't matter what golf course I was playing on at the moment, I would still struggle and I need to sort that out.

"Having said that, I've just had three weeks off. There's not much rust, but I wasn't hitting it great before Memphis and the US Open.

"I just played a lot of golf at the start of the season and didn't feel like playing to be honest. I am going to have to start scheduling better. It's been a train wreck.

Westwood admitted it had been "quite a while" since he was keen to play and added: "You can't contend when you're hitting it like I am. I haven't hit it very well for two or three months.

"You are going to struggle on any golf course but when it's a major championship test, when there is likely to be a bit of breeze, you are going to struggle.

"You just have to keep grinding away trying to find the answer. I know what I've got to work on. It's just a case of teaching the old dog new tricks."

Belfast Telegraph


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