The Honda Classic interview: Lee Westwood

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March 02, 2013

MORE INTERVIEWS: The Honda Classic transcripts archive

Q.  I think people make a big deal out of it being a home game for you.  How nice is it to have your wife and your kids out here watching you play a home game here in Florida?

LEE WESTWOOD: 
Yeah, it's great.  I mean, you know, it's nice to have that support and a lot of members from Old Palm are here, as well, that I spotted in the crowd.  Sometimes it's difficult, because you tend to get in the zone and you get a bit focused with blinkers on, and you hear people shouting things, but you don't look up and you don't see a face.  So I apologize if I didn't acknowledge anybody. 

But yeah, it's nice to go home and sleep in your own bed and sort of do the normal things that you would do.  Some of the days I've taken the kids to school.  It's been a nice week.  I've never had a chance do it before because there's never been a tournament so close to my home in England.
   
Q.  Take us through your mind set at the turn?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
I dropped a couple of silly shots on 8 and 9, downwind holes.  I thought the golf course gave me a few shots coming in, 15 is playing 9 iron and 17 is only a wedge today.  I just got caught between clubs at the last and tried to hit a big cut with a 3 wood instead of just going with a hybrid, like my caddie suggested.  Luckily it crossed land by a long way.  Made a nice putt.

Q.  The pitch in on 14 was nice, especially after missing the short one on 13.
   
LEE WESTWOOD:
  And I normally get a bit of stick for not having a short game but I chipped inside this week and a lot of sand saves and a lot of scrambling like you need to do around this golf course.  Maybe I'm turning that around.

Q.  If conditions are this tough again tomorrow, do you like your chances?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
Well, I like my chances regardless of the conditions.  I'm playing nicely.  Just got a couple of mistakes I made today.
    But you know, other than that, I'm playing solidly, and have to start making a few putts.  I had a lot of chances to make putts that just grazed the hole.  Yeah, I like being out late on a Sunday and having a chance.

Q.  Battling hard on the back nine, how important was that?
   
LEE WESTWOOD:
  I made a couple of poor bogeys downwind on 8 and 9.  They are really holes where you are looking to try to pick up on the front nine    you know probably the front nine is going to be the scoring nine and the back nine is going to be tougher.  After hitting it in the water at the last, as well, with the wrong club    I picked the wrong club, and come up with 5, it was good to have a chance.

Q.  You talked about this earlier in the week, how proud you are of the way you are swinging this week; can you just verbalize that?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
Well, I chipped in again today and I had a couple of good up and downs early on.  It's sharp.  I'm rolling some nice putts in now and again, and I'm happy with where my game is at.  I feel like I'm gradually improving and all of the short game work is paying off.

Q.  Going to have wind tomorrow, tee to green, you are a great ball striker; do you have an advantage being a great ball striker opinion in the wind?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
Yeah, I'm a good ball striker, control your flight and control your trajectory.

Q.  Does that separate you  
   
LEE WESTWOOD:
  I don't know whether that separates me.  Everybody is a good ball striker.  I think having a short game, you have to be sharp tee to green and you have to make those 5 , 6 footers, a key as it is in any round in the final round.

Q.  How do you like your position?
   
LEE WESTWOOD:
  It's a good position to be in.  Probably going to be in the second to last group tomorrow.  I like my position now.
    Made a couple of poor bogeys on 8 and 9 playing downwind, Geoff makes this 3 on them and I make 5 on them, felt like you're giving shots away to the field.  On holes like that, you have to try to make a bit up, because when the golf course is as difficult as this and playing as hard as it is with the wind today, then you can't afford to make silly mistakes like that.

Q.  If the conditions are the same tomorrow, what's it going to take?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
Oh, I don't know what score.  I never really put a total on it, but you know, strike the ball well, get up and down and your short game and putting have to be sharp.
    They are got way they set the golf course up, they moved some tees up like places in interesting spots that it gets breezy.  For sure, if you're hitting the ball well enough there are birdies out on this golf course.

Q.  Any sense from the people that they know you're local now?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
Yeah, when I walk on 17 and they say I'm from Palm Beach Gardens, a bigger cheer goes up than when it's from Worksop, for sure.  But no, I've got support in the States as it is, but probably even more so now that I've moved here now, yeah.

Q.  Can you just talk about wanting to win here in your new hometown?
   
LEE WESTWOOD: 
Well, I think if you look at my career, I haven't won enough over in the States, anyway.  It's not a case of wanting to win here, it's a case of wanting to win more on this tour.  I've put myself in position a lot but just haven't finished it up.
Having moved here and giving myself more opportunities to play here, I can start winning more.  I've got 40 career wins and only two in the States, so need to try and change that.

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