February 19 2013
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
MARANA, Ariz. -- Lee Westwood has played in the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship a dozen times.
Until last year, though, when Westwood reached Sunday's consolation finals, he had never made it past the second round. So was there anything the Englishman did differently?
"Other than not really putting too much pressure on myself to try and get going in the tournament, no," Westwood said. "Just try to play carefree golf sort of and see what happened."
His success at Dove Mountain a year ago -- where Westwood beat a formidable lineup in Nicolas Colsaerts, Robert Karlsson, Nick Watney and Martin Laird before falling to Rory McIlroy in the semifinals -- has the transplanted Brit eager to see what happens this week. He has additional motivation, too, after moving his family to South Florida over the Christmas holidays.
"This is my fourth week away, so the moving in process is happening as we speak, so my main incentive this week is to get as far as possible to stay away from box-unpacking duty," Westwood said with a smile.
"Other than the fact that we're playing for a World Golf Championship and fortunes, I'm trying to stay away from the task of unwrapping things, as well. So that's a lot of pressure."
Westwood's first-round opponent is Rafael Cabrera-Bello, who is playing in the Accenture Match Play Championship for the second time. Westwood is pleased with the way he's playing, particularly his short game, but he's looking to get on a roll after ties for 46th and 21st in his first two PGA TOUR starts.
"The first three weeks of the year, I really haven't been able to sort of get any momentum going," Westwood explained. "If I have, then I've followed it up at that double bogey or something like that. I haven't had the breaks when I've needed them. It's just golf, and you just keep playing and try and do the right things well and more often, and just wait for things to happen.
"This could be the week that it happens."