Lee Westwood is pretty excited about the resumption of the European Tour season, starting in July, when he will host the first tournament.
The Tour is expected to announce its revised schedule for the remainder of the year after an absence of more than two months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Englishman will play host at the British Masters at Close House in Newcastle when it gets under way on the 23 July.
Indications are that the tour will schedule a five-week ‘summer festival of UK golf’ to accommodate travelling players without a great deal of health risks.
And Westwood, who already stated that he will avoid the PGA Tour due to its quarantine regulations, is looking forward to welcoming the very best on the European Tour to his home course.
‘The course is already in fantastic condition as you’d expect,’ the 47-year-old told Sky Sports Golf.
‘They’ve had seven or eight weeks without any play, so the greens staff have been able to do a lot of good work. I’ve seen a massive change in the condition of the greens over the last couple of weeks since the weather got better.
‘It’s an exciting time for getting the course ready and hopefully it will be the start of the European season kicking off. I hosted it there in 2017 and is was great, it was an honour and it was really nice to see it at Close House. A lot of great players turned out so obviously that was very good, and it had a great finish and a great winner.’
Westwood claimed an impressive victory at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in January in front of thousands of fans and currently occupies second spot on the Race to Dubai.
But, given the risk of social distancing, he expects this year’s British Masters, as well as other events, to be played behind closed doors.
‘The crowds turned out and supported it, but I don’t think we’ll be able to have the crowds this time. But hopefully it will be a great tournament and a great finish and a great way to start off the season again. I’m sure everybody is very keen to see some live golf.’