Westwood eyes return to winning ways

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The Independent Online

Lee Westwood is anxious to get back on the victory trail at this week’s Ballantine’s Championship in Korea.

The English ace has an impressive 18 European Tour wins to his name but the last of those came in September 2007.

“I haven't won for over a year now, so I would like to get back to winning,” he said.

“I was close last year and lost a couple of playoffs. I finished close in the World Golf Championships event at Akron and close at the US Open, where I was third.

“My form's been good. I played well a couple of weeks ago at the Masters but had a bad finish on the last four holes, and I played well in Houston the week before.

“My game has been good, but I’ve just not been finishing the weeks off. It will be good to get some form together this week and try and win.”

Westwood is one of the leading contenders at the €2.1 million Ballantine’s Championship, which begins on Thursday at Pinx Golf Club on the picturesque island of Jeju.

The star-studded field includes three-time Major winner Ernie Els, world No.9 Henrik Stenson, defending champion Graeme McDowell and former Masters champion Fred Couples.

Westwood has an excellent record in Asia with victories in Japan, Macau and Malaysia, but is making his first visit to Korea.

“I've heard good reports about the golf course and I'm looking forward to the tournament,” he said.

“I think it's going to be windy by all accounts, so that will test everybody, and I think the rough's been growing a bit with the tournament being a bit later this year, so it should be an interesting week.”

Beyond Korea, the Ryder Cup star’s main goal this year is a maiden Major victory.

“I would like to get into contention at the majors and try to win one of those. It's probably the only thing missing. I've won pretty much everywhere else,” he said.

The Ballantine’s Championship is once again co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours and Korea PGA.