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Biography of Lee Westwood

By Euan Douglas

Lee John Westwood was born on the 24th April 1973 in Worksop, Nottinghamshire. He is by no means the only famous person to come from this small town in the Midlands there's Graham Taylor and David Pleasance, the actor. As Lee says, "We're all recluses up here."

Lee played his first round at the tender age of 13, at the Kilton Forest municipal, scoring about 180. He says, "I lost count after a while, though!" By the age of 14 he was Nottinghamshire Junior champion. A year earlier he beat a player 5 years his senior to secure the Notts junior cup for his club.

1991

In 1991 Lee won the Notts Junior Matchplay title a year after he won his first major amateur tournament, the Peter McEvoy Trophy. In the same year Lee wins the Notts Junior medal and captains England Youth. He had already represented England boys in 1989.

1992

The following year Lee pulls of an amazing double, clinching both the Notts Strokeplay and Matchplay titles. In '93 Lee wins the British Youth Championship. He turns pro and wins his tour card at his first try.

1996

At 24 Lee secures his first pro victory, coming trumps in the Volvo Scandanavian Masters. In the same season his is victor at the Sumitomo Visa Taiheiyo Masters in Japan.In 1996 he wins 449,960 on tour and comes 6th in the order of merit.

1997

1997 was his most succesful season on tour so far, winning 4 events. His form at the end of the season was sensational. He won the following events;

Lee rates his victory in Australia as the best of his career. He finishes 3rd in the order of merit winning 588,718. His performances in the majors were encouraging. In his first ever trip to the US Lee comes 24th in the Masters, making sure of an invite to next years event. In all 4 majors Lee never came worse than 30th and was the only European to make the cut in all 4 tournaments.

In his first Ryder Cup Lee forms a formiddable partnership with Nick Faldo and wins 2 points from 5 as Europe win the Ryder Cup.

1998

In 1998 Lee wins his first USPGA event the week before the US masters. He won in the New Orleans Freeport Classic and his odds for the Masters drop to 14/1. His performance in the first major of the year, however, was disappointing. He made the cut by 1 stroke but ends up almost last of those who made the weekend ending in 44th at 12+.

Generally, though, 1998 has been a huge year for Lee. He keeps to his most simple of all philosophies, "I may make a mistake, but never the same one twice, that's just stupid." Wise words indeed.

Lee continues his unfaltering progress by winning 7 events:

Despite leading the Eurpean Order of Merit for most of the season, Lee falls at the last hurdle as Colin Montgomerie takes the title for an unprecidented 6th consecutive year. The challenge went down to the very last event, with Darren Clarke winning the Volvo Masters after Lee had the overnight lead going in to the last day. He bodged up though, and ended up 3rd on the Order of Merit. Still a credit worthy acheivement for a man of only 25!!

Lee was, however, voted as the European Tour player of the year in 1998, a remarkable record.

Lee has made a credit worthy 1,626,410 in this year alone.

In the meantime Lee was making a charge on the World rankings chart, too. During '98 Lee jumped from 23rd to the dizzy heights of 7th, which he acheived in July after the Loch Lomond win. he regained the 7th spot after his back to back wins in Japan at the end of the year.

On the years other majors, Lee fails to feature despite being heavily fancied prior to all of them. This must be Lee's next big target for 1999, along with the Order of Merit.


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Last modified: 2/5/98