Imagine Golf Blogs

Westwood one off the pace in Shanghai

Englishman justifying world number one spot

Posted Nov 05, 2010 by Jeff Dawson

Lee Westwood

Lee Westwood is justifying his position as the best golfer in the world after a strong finish to his second round at the HSBC Champions Challenge left him one off the lead in Shanghai.
The Nottingham Forest supporting superstar is currently eight under after 36 holes and trails European Ryder Cup teammate Francesco Molinari who’s currently on -9. Westwood’s main rivals for the World Number One spot, Tiger Woods (-4), Martin Kaymer and Phil Mickelson (both -3), are some way off the pace.
This form should put any questions over Westwood’s position as the world’s best to bed. He is once again showing the kind of form he has shown over the last few years and leading from the front.
There is no-one else on the world golfing circuit presently that I would put near Westwood. Kaymer has had some special moments, don’t get me wrong, but when he’s needed to produce – last week at Valderrama and now in Shanghai – he’d been found wanting. I know, I know, there’s still two rounds of golf to play and so much can change in 36 holes but I can’t see Westwood giving four or five shots away to his rivals.
He is now one of the calmest and most collected professionals out there and when you watch him, he looks at ease.
So what’s likely to happen over the final two rounds?
Well I expect Westwood to challenge for the win. I expect Woods to stay around where he is as he’s a model of inconsistency at present, firing five bogeys and five birdies in a difficult level par 72 yesterday. I also expect that one of either Mickelson or Kaymer will make a charge and storm up the leaderboard but I can’t see both finding the kind of scores they’ll need to compete. But watch out for the likes of Luke Donald and Ernie Els who both sit primed to challenge the front runners. Donald is currently six under whilst Els is one better on minus seven.
The next few days will be fascinating entertainment and I for one will be tuned in and cheering Westwood on, hoping he takes the title.

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