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Wednesday, 07 September 2011
 Lee Westwood   (Getty Images)
Lee Westwood (Getty Images)
Lee Westwood makes his first appearance in the KLM Open since 2002 hoping for a repeat of his 1999 victory.

The English World Number Two lines up at Hilversumsche Golf Club alongside the two players immediately below him in the Official World Golf Ranking - Martin Kaymer and Rory McIlroy - as The European Tour enjoys another star-studded field.

And Westwood insists he is at the top of his game after seven top-ten finishes in his last nine events.

“It's nice to be back,” he said. “I think it's changed a little bit - it's a bit longer now. 

“It's obviously changing and improving all the time, and it's nice to be back and playing what is very much a traditional course, tree lined and very tight. It’s slightly reminiscent of a Woodhall Spa or a Sunningdale or Walton Heath or Swinley Forest.

“Before going on holiday, the two tournaments in America, I played very nicely. I hit the ball really well, and then last week I didn't hit it so good - I was a bit rusty. 

“My body was a bit lazy after spending a couple of weeks on the beach but I did some good work Monday afternoon with Pete Cowen, my coach on the range at home, and some work on my short game, because that was a bit rusty as well. So I’m looking forward to playing this week.”

Westwood, feeling refreshed after two weeks in Barbados before last week’s Omega European Masters, believes there is still plenty to play for in 2011.

“You have to look for points during the year to have a holiday and recharge, and always after the PGA Championship is one of those for me,” he added. “So it's nice to break up the year and split it into blocks and after all the Majors are out of the way, recharge and get ready for this end of season run where there are some big tournaments coming up. 

“Obviously I'd like to play well each week for the rest of this year. I've got some big tournaments coming up. 

“I'd like to play well in all of them, but I think the Money List is still there. There's a chance of that - if I can start stringing some wins together, there's some big tournaments for a lot of money. 

“I want to try and get a bit close to Luke in the World Rankings, improve my putting as the year progresses, and get in the gym and try and focus on fitness. So I've got a good, toned beach body for when I go on holiday! 

“Luke's got a very big lead, so it's going to be difficult to catch him up. But there's obviously this week, there's €300,000 on offer and the Dunhill Links where there's a big prize fund and the World Golf Championship in China, and the last event of the year in Dubai. 

“So while ever there's enough money to catch up, then you've got to just try and do your best and try to win every event you play in.” 

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