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Colin Montgomerie reckons that Lee Westwood is still capable of winning a major – and has tipped him to contend in this summer’s Open Championship.

Westwood, 47, has just enjoyed back-to-back runner-up finishes on the PGA Tour at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and PLAYERS Championship respectively.

That, combined with his impressive form on the European Tour, where he won the Race to Dubai in 2020, has prompted many to suggest that the Englishman may still get the major that is so conspicuous by its absence from his CV.

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Montgomerie, of course, knows all about that. The Scot made 75 appearances in the game’s four biggest events without victory. Westwood is currently on 84 but, considering his form, Montgomerie is adamant his hopes have not yet gone, suggesting that this year’s COVID-delayed Open at Royal St George’s presents a great opportunity for him.

“Lee Westwood’s strength has always been off the tee,” Montgomerie told the latest episode of The bunkered Podcast. “He’s been a very good driver of the ball for 20 years and Royal St George’s, with its hogback and fast-running fairways, is the sort of course that will play into his hands.

“Another thing that’s going to play into his hands at Royal St George’s are the greens. They won’t be at 13 on the Stimpmeter. They’ll be about nine or ten because that’s what links greens are. So it’ll take away the advantage of the putters that enjoy quick greens.

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“There is no reason at all with his fitness and his belief and his confidence why he can’t do extremely well. Now, if somebody goes out and blows everybody off the park, okay, fine. But I reckon Lee Westwood will be in contention at Royal St George’s and there’s no reason why he can’t be.”

Montgomerie also believes that it would be fitting for Westwood to end his major duck at the Sandwich venue a decade on from Darren Clarke doing likewise. “You go back to his good friend Darren Clarke winning there in 2011 and it is almost a little bit written in the stars,” added Montgomerie. “So we wish him well.”

To listen to the full interview with Colin Montgomerie on The bunkered Podcast, click here.

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Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

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