I'm not best in world, but not far off, says Westwood

By Andrew Both

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Reuters) - Lee Westwood has never been one to blow his own trumpet, so he was pleased to have an opportunity on Tuesday to clarify a recent comment in which he appeared to claim he was the world's best golfer.

After finishing runner-up to Phil Mickelson in the Masters at Augusta, Westwood was quoted as saying: "I'm playing the best golf of anyone. It's hard to argue for anyone else. If you are (the best) you might as well say it. It builds confidence."

"I've been out here long enough to know that things get just twisted around slightly to suit people," the Briton told reporters.

"And I said 'the way I played at Augusta, which is the last time I played and the last time all the best players in the world got together, I led the greens in regulation, so it was very difficult to argue against that the last time we all played.

"At least talking to you here now I can tell you the question I was asked and what I replied."

Westwood has enjoyed a leisurely fortnight break since the Masters. Last week's airline shutdown in Europe scuppered a holiday in Barbados, so he spent the time instead at home in the Midlands in England.

Now he is back in the United States for this week's PGA Tour event, as well as next week's Players Championship in Florida.

"After the Masters, I felt I needed a bit of a rest, so I've been switched off the last couple of weeks, but I think I'll sharpen as the week goes on hopefully.

"It's nice to be back at Quail Hollow. It's an old, traditional course that makes you think a lot. You have to drive the ball well.

"All your game has to be in good shape and once you get on the greens, there's some really fast putts out there. These are as quick as anything I've seen all year."

(Editing by Miles Evans)