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Westwood: I'm not a major flop like Monty

ESPN staff
July 24, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Lee Westwood is undeterred by his Muirfield near-miss © PA Photos
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Lee Westwood has dismissed comparisons with another famous British player never to win a major, Colin Montgomerie - insisting he has already achieved more than the Scot.

Westwood, the former world No. 1, finished third at the recent Open Championship - seeing a two-shot lead slip away over the final round at Muirfield as Phil Mickelson romped to his fifth career major title.

It is not the first time Westwood, who now has the record for most top-three finishes in a major without winning one (eight), has seen his dreams crumble in the final round - but the 40-year-old insists he should not be compared to Montgomerie, who famously won seven consecutive European Tour Order of Merit titles without ever triumphing in a major.

"I know about the comparisons [with Montgomerie] but he didn't actually get to world No.1, he got to No.2," Westwood said. "I got to No.1.

"The next major is only two weeks away so it's exciting I get another chance to do it. And if I don't win that one I've got another eight months to prepare for the Masters at Augusta.

"I tend not to look at negatives really - and what other people think. I don't over-analyse on a Sunday night after the event. I probably had one, maybe two wrong clubs all day.

"People might say, 'You don't know how to win a major'. No, I don't know how to win a major because I haven't won one yet. Who are these experts? Majors are meant to be difficult to win."

Westwood hopes the experience at Muirfield will only help him over the next major championships - believing he has proved to himself, if not yet everyone else, that he is mentally strong enough to win.

"What's the word they use up here? It was 'mint'. I played 'mint' for three days and then not so good on Sunday," he added. "But it was not a mental thing. Mentally I'm stronger than ever. I could cope with the situation.

"I was stood on the first tee on Sunday, last off. That is the position every professional golfer wants to find themselves in. Leading the Open, being the last to tee off, thousands of people there - it was a great atmosphere.

"The first three days were good. I finished third in a major championship. You have to take positives from that."

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