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May 2 2012

5:16 PM

Westwood takes caddy mishap in stride

Westwood news conference before Wells Fargo

Prior to the Wells Fargo Championship, Lee Westwood meets with the media and talks about Quail Hollow as a tournament venue and the temporary loss of his caddie Billy Foster.

By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Lee Westwood hasn't exactly had to go out and recruit.

The world No. 3 will be without his normal caddy, Billy Foster, for the next few weeks after the caddy injured his knee in a charity soccer game on Monday.  At least for the next two weeks, Cayce Kerr, will be on the bag. Kerr normally caddies for Fred Couples and has worked for Darren Clarke and Fuzzy Zoeller, as well.

"I got plenty of texts ranging from caddies to players," Westwood said. "It's one of those things you've got to play by ear, really.  There's a couple of good caddies that have said they'll fill in while he's out."

Westwood said Foster wasn't even playing in the match, he just "put his foot down wrong and torn something in his knee." He's on crutches now and will have an MRI on Friday when he gets back to England. Westwood expects to be without Foster for at least four events.

"He's set a goal for the PGA at Wentworth, which is two and a half weeks' time, which I think is a bit --  well, you'd expect that from Billy, stubborn Yorkshireman," Westwood said. "But I think the Scandinavian Masters in Sweden the week before the U.S. Open is probably more realistic."

The two have worked together for three years. Westwood, who could become world No. 1 if he wins at Quail Hollow this week and Rory McIlroy finishes lower than sixth, said Foster called him almost immediately after the accident.

"He asked me if I loved him," Westwood said, remembering the conversation with a smile. "I said, yes ..."

Westwood said the good-natured Foster knows his game extremely well. While he reads his own putts, Westwood said he uses Foster "quite a lot" from tee to green. At the same time, "This is not my first rodeo. I think I'll be able to cope," Westwood said, adding that Kerr is used to the pressures of contention.

"It'll be a loss for a few weeks, but accidents happen," Westwood said. "What can you do? He goes skiing twice a year and he's never done anything doing that, and then he puts his foot down wrong on a football field having a kick around, which like I said I could have done at home playing with my son in the garden, and it just blows out.
   
"I did remind him that he's now 46 and not 26. But when he goes home and he gets to Washington airport and they stick him on one of those trolleys, which I'm hoping they do, I'm hoping someone will get a photograph of that. I've told him that, as well."

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