Lee Westwood's trips to America are likely to be even less frequent next year.
Westwood to cut his trips to US
SUTTON COLDFIELD // Lee Westwood's trips to America are likely to be even less frequent next year.But that has nothing to do with the "shameful" heckling he received at last week's Ryder Cup in Louisville. The former European No 1, now at the Belfry eyeing a successful defence of the Quinn Insurance British Masters title, may miss next February's Accenture World Match Play in Arizona.
"You could go to Tucson, get there on the Monday, practise on Tuesday and then fly home on Wednesday night having shot a 65 and a guy shooting 64 beats you," said Westwood. In the last five stagings of the event he has gone out in the first round three times and in the second round twice. "It doesn't really fit in with all the stuff I want to do around it," he added. "It messes up your schedule for the next couple of weeks as well with it being an eight-hour or seven-hour time change.
"At some point you just have to evaluate it. I was thinking about missing it this year but I ended up going." That was because he played the US Tour event in Los Angeles the previous week, but that is not in his plans either for 2009. In a pointed dig about how the World Golf Championships have all been taking place in the United States lately, Westwood, no longer a member of the US Tour, added: "I'll wait until they play the world events around the world."
His only events in America could be the three majors and the other two world championships in Miami in March - "probably" he says on that one - and Akron in August. Despite feeling "shattered" and "running on empty" yesterday, the 35-year-old added a 70 to his opening 68, but was kept waiting to discover if it gave him the lead going into the third round. That was because of a three-hour fog delay at the start of the day. Not only did it hold up play, it also meant he missed his daughter Poppy being a scarecrow in a harvest festival.
When play was called off at 7.05pm Friday, Westwood shared top spot with Jeev Milkha Singh. * PA Sport