LONDON (Reuters) - Former world number one Lee Westwood will look to end an eight-year wait for a victory on home soil when he competes in the $4.55 million British Masters at Woburn this week.
The European Ryder Cup stalwart last won in England when the British Masters was played at The Belfry, just outside Birmingham, in 2007.
Westwood, who missed the third-round cut at last week’s Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland, is pleased the tournament is returning to the European Tour schedule after a seven-year hiatus.
“It’s great to see the British Masters back ... because it’s a very prestigious title to win,” he told www.europeantour.com on Monday.
“Woburn’s been a great venue for many years. I remember it being quite tight off the tee so, while it’s quite short and therefore score-able, you’ve got to drive the ball well to go low there.”
Outside of the British Open and the BMW PGA Championship, fans have had little top-notch golf to watch in England in recent years and Westwood believes they will flock to the venue that is situated 50 miles north of London.
“I’m sure we’ll get some decent crowds supporting the British players,” said the world number 44 who has amassed 23 European Tour wins in his career.
“British golfers have enjoyed a lot of success in recent years so it’s great that we can stage another tournament in England to share that success with the fans.”
The event starts on Thursday and is hosted by Woburn professional and world number 42 Ian Poulter.
The British Masters will be hosted by Westwood, who had two spells at the top of the world rankings in 2010 and 2011, and fellow Englishmen Justin Rose and Luke Donald in future years.
Writing by Tony Jimenez; Editing by Pritha Sarkar