Lee Westwood confident after staying away over virus concerns

Britain’s Lee Westwood, who skipped closing month’s PGA Championship over coronavirus factors, is confidently chasing his long-sought first major title after a distinct segment 67 Thursday on the US Open.

The 47-year-old Englishman, who might develop to be the second-oldest major winner in golf historic earlier, was two strokes off the tempo being set by Justin Thomas after 18 holes at Winged Foot.

Westwood has 12 top-five finishes at major championships with out a victory, three of his near-misses coming at US Opens, nonetheless he nonetheless squandered an opportunity to play in an enormous closing month on the PGA in san Francisco, reluctant to hazard catching the lethal virus irrespective of two months of safeguarded US PGA Tour occasions.

“It is solely a peculiar world that we’re dwelling in appropriate now, and totally different people have utterly utterly totally different opinions on factors, do not they?” Westwood stated Thursday. “They ponder factors and see factors in fairly a couple of methods. It is a should to respect the person’s view on it.

“I do not actually criticize anyone that takes an opinion reverse to mine. It is merely that you just simply should not be at a golf match for individuals who happen to do not actually really feel favor it’s appropriate.

“I am not saying it is not appropriate for constructive of us, nonetheless only for me it wasn’t appropriate… It felt too early popping out – not even out of it. We’re going into second waves correct proper right here and there. Felt too early to start out touring 10 hours on an airplane. In order that was the view and the route I took.”

Westwood modified his concepts, nonetheless, after speaking to utterly totally different avid avid gamers and listening to concerning the precautions in place.

“Merely suggestions from utterly totally different of us which have been at tournaments and telling me what is going on on on at tournaments and stuff like that,” Westwood stated. “I felt snug coming correct proper right here.”

He carried out which means as appropriately, sinking a 12-foot birdie putt on the ninth gap, his closing of the spherical, to affix Rory McIlroy and Louis Oosthuizen in a share of fifth.

The one major winner older than Westwood could be on Sunday is Julius Boros, who was 48 when he obtained the 1968 PGA Championship.

Westwood shared 10th on the European Tour Andalucia Masters two weeks before now after a 67 all through the closing spherical at Valderrama, a spherical that has given him confidence this week.

“I’ve constructed on that and fed off confidence as quickly as additional from that,” stated Westwood. “All through the observe rounds, I hit it appropriately. I hit various fairways. I am driving the ball appropriately. I felt like, if I did that, then there is a low rating within the market for me.”

Westwood made 5 birdies and two bogeys on Thursday with a concentrate on fairways and inserting.

“I do not think about myself extended by any means out correct proper right here,” Westwood stated. “You get it all through the green typically spherical correct proper right here, it is potential you may rating appropriately.

“On account of the golf course firms out and significantly little little little bit of wind picks up, which could be going, and pin positions clearly get additional sturdy, it’s not going to yield as many low scores. Correct now was the day to get off to an honest begin and get some credit score rating score.”

First-round scores on Thursday all through the 120th US Open Golf Championship at Winged Foot in Mamaroneck, New York:

65 – Justin Thomas (USA)

66 – Patrick Reed (USA), Matthew Wolff (USA), Thomas Pieters (BEL)

67 – Louis Oosthuizen (RSA), Lee Westwood (ENG), Rory McIlroy (NIR)

– Joaquin Niemann (CHI), Rafael Cabrera Bello (ESP), Harris English
(USA), Xander Schauffele (USA), Jason Kokrak (USA), Brendon Todd (USA)

69 – Davis Thompson (USA), John Pak (USA), Rickie Fowler (USA), Bryson DeChambeau (USA), Jon Rahm (ESP), Shaun Norris (RSA), Rory Sabbatini (SVK)

70 – Matt Wallace (ENG), Erik van Rooyen (RSA), Christiaan Bezuidenhout (RSA),
Patrick Cantlay (USA), Kurt Kitayama (USA), Chun An Yu (TPE), Michael
Thompson (USA), Im Sung-jae (KOR), Zach Johnson (USA), Will Zalatoris
(USA), Danny Lee (NZL)

71 – J.T. Poston (USA), Andy Sullivan
(ENG), Martin Kaymer (GER), Thomas Detry (GER), Hideki Matsuyama (JPN),
Webb Simpson (USA), Adam Scott (AUS), Lucas Glover (USA), Corey Conners
(CAN), Sebastian Munoz (COL), Chan Kim +(USA), Taylor Pendrith (CAN),
Renato Paratore (ITA), Adam Extended (USA), Cameron Smith (AUS), Andy
Ogletree (USA), Abraham Ancer (MEX), Viktor Hovland (NOR), Romain
Langasque (FRA), Shugo Imahira (JPN), An Byeong-hun (KOR), Lanto Griffin
(USA), Stephan Jaeger (GER), Adrian Otaegui (ESP)

72 – Preston
Summerhays (USA), Jimmy Walker (USA), Paul Waring (ENG), Jason Day
(AUS), Ryo Ishikawa (JPN), Adam Hadwin (CAN), Mackenzie Hughes (CAN),
Troy Merritt (USA), Lucas Herbert (AUS), Kim Si-woo  (KOR), Bubba Watson
(USA), Billy Horschel (USA), Takumi Kanaya (JPN), Alex Noren (SWE)

– Daniel Balin (USA), Joel Dahmen (USA), Ricky Castillo (USA), Kevin
Streelman (USA), Jazz Janewattananond (THA), Tyler Duncan (USA), Jordan
Spieth (USA), Tiger Woods (USA), Justin Rose (ENG), Charles Howell
(USA), Richy Werenski (USA), Mike Lorenzo-Vera (FRA), Jim Herman (USA),
Andrew Putnam USA), Chesson Hadley (USA), Ryan Palmer (USA), Bernd
Wiesberger (AUT), Marc Leishman (AUS),  Cameron Champ (USA), Daniel
Berger (USA), Dustin Johnson (USA)

74 – Brandon Wu (USA), Ryan Fox (NZL), JC Ritchie (RSA),
Brian Harman (USA), Kang Sung (KOR), Tom Lewis (ENG), John Augenstein
(USA), Tyrrell Hatton (ENG), Henrik Stenson (SWE), Sergio Garcia (ESP),
Matt Kuchar (USA), Steve Stricker (USA), Robert MacIntyre (SCO), Scott
Hend (AUS), Gary Woodland, Matt Fitzpatrick (ENG), Tommy Fleetwood (ENG)

75 – Curtis Luck (AUS), Greyson Sigg (USA), Chez Reavie (USA), Kevin Na (USA), Ian Poulter (ENG), Sandy Scott (SCO), Branden Grace (RSA), Keegan Bradley (USA), Brandt Snedeker (USA)

– Victor Perez (FRA), Collin Morikawa (USA), Graeme McDowell (NIR), Dan
McCarthy (USA), Eduard Rousaud (ESP), Matt Jones (AUS), Shane Lowry
(IRL), Kevin Kisner (USA), Paul Casey (ENG), Mark Hubbard (USA), Lee
Hodges (USA)

77 – Rasmus Hojgaard (DEN), Danny Willett (ENG), Justin Harding (RSA), Matthias Schwab (AUT), Cole Hammer (USA)

78 – Max Homa (USA), Eddie Pepperell (ENG), Sami Valimaki (FIN), Ryan Vermeer (USA), James Sugrue (IRL)

79 – Phil Mickelson, Davis Riley (USA)

Lukas Michel (AUS)

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