Lee Westwood played well at the Masters Tournament once again, but not quite well enough to shed his label as one of the best players in the world never to win a major.
Westwood lit up the second nine, posting four birdies. He shot 68 to finish tied for third at 8-under par.
It was the second-best finish in 13 appearances at Augusta for Westwood, who finished second behind Phil Mickelson in 2010.
Westwood was accurate off the tee all week – hitting 42 of 56 fairways (75 percent) to rank tied for 22nd in the field.
His iron play was spot on, as he ranked tied for first in the field (with Matt Kuchar) by hitting 58 of 72 greens in regulation (80.56 percent).
But as it has in the past, Westwood’s putter hurt him on the slick, rolling greens of Augusta National.
Westwood ranked 59th in the field with 128 putts over four rounds. He had four three-putts over 72 holes.
“The story of the week is you have got to putt well to win the Masters and I haven’t putted well,” Westwood said. “I came out and missed a 2-footer on the third inexplicably, and that is not the kind of thing that will give you confidence for the rest of the round. So I didn’t really make that many putts. The longest I made was 10 feet on No. 18. I made a good one at the right time, but that’s not really good enough.”
After making the turn in 36, Westwood found his rhythm at the end of Amen Corner.
He birdied Nos. 13, 14 and 15 before settling for par on the next two holes.
On the 18th, Westwood finished out his tournament in style with a final birdie.
“It’s an enjoyable place to be as a professional golfer,” Westwood said. “Especially to shoot 4-under on the back nine. It’s the kind of response you want from yourself.”
In the last five years, Westwood has finished T-11th, 43rd, 2nd, T-11th and now tied for third at Augusta.
“I’ve been in there a couple times in the last four years and it’s a great experience,” Westwood said. “It’s a nice place to be … it’s the arena you want to play in. When the weather is like this, there is nowhere quite like it.”
Westwood’s Ryder Cup teammate Sergio Garcia told the media he doesn’t think he has what it takes to win a major. Westwood isn’t ready to go there yet.
“Well, yeah, (I) keep plugging and working out,” Westwood said. “I don’t feel like giving up just yet.”