The 46 year old, and former world number one golfer, Lee Westwood started the new year off well in Abu-Dhabi on Sunday. He finished round four on five under giving him a winning total of 19 under for the competition.
This was enough to beat fellow Englishmen Tommy Fleetwood and Matt Fitzpatrick as well as Victor Perez by two shots. The win is Westwood’s 44th of his career and his 25th on the European Tour.
By winning the Abu Dhabi Championship, Westwood has now earned the honour of European tour wins in four different decades. His first win was in August 1996, beginning a winning career spanning 24 years and counting.
Westwood said that his aims before the tournament were to get himself back into the top 50 and to qualify for the remaining majors this year. His win in Abu-Dhabi secured this as he moved from position 63 to 29 in the Official World Golf Rankings.
He took to twitter the next day to saying: “You’ll be happy to know I’ve got a banging headache!!! The chicken shawarma at 3am might have been a mistake!”
Westwood insisted he was going back on the wagon, saying: “That was just a blip — although it was a pretty serious one.
“I’m back on Dry January for the rest of the month. And I might even stay off the hard stuff on February 1 to make up for my little lapse!”
Now he has secured his place in the major’s he can start planning for the rest of the year and maybe even the Ryder Cup!
Westwood has never won a major in his career, his best ever finish has been second in The Masters in 2010 and 2016. He also finished second in The Open Championship in 2010. If he can carry on his form from Abu-Dhabi to The Masters in April he has every chance of winning it
The Masters is regarded as the biggest competition on the golfing calendar. It is played annually at Augusta with the winner receiving the famous Green Jacket. Westwood didn’t make it into The Masters last year so will no doubt be delighted that this year he can play at the world famous course.
When asked about the Ryder Cup, Westwood said he wasn’t sure if he could take another one and enjoyed watching it last time. He has played in ten Ryder Cups against the USA but has said if the chance came about he would go for it. No-one has been in more Ryder Cup winning teams than Westwood (7) and if Europe want to retain it then they may need to turn to him. It’s early in the golfing season and a lot can happen, but regardless of that it’s going to be an exciting year for Lee Westwood as he goes to the majors proving to himself, and the rest of the world, that he has still has what it takes to get to the top.