Lee Westwood has appointed Tony Johnstone as his new short-game coach (credit: Getty Images)
Lee Westwood has appointed Tony Johnstone as his new short-game coach as he tries to rediscover his form in time for the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah near Chicago.
The Englishman dispensed with the services of coach Pete Cowen last week and has turned to the Zimbabwean to improve his play around the greens.
Widely regarded as the best ball-striker in the world from tee to green, Westwood’s short game has always been perceived as a weakness.
His failure to make the cut at the recent US PGA Championship, won by Rory McIlroy, extended his run to 59 Majors without a victory and Westwood has been complaining about his game since before the Open championship at Royal Lytham.
The move to bring in Johnstone has been applauded by fellow Zimbabwean and former world No 1 Nick Price, who told Golf Digest Canada: “It’s a wise choice. Tony is the most under-rated short-game player ever. I'm so happy for him and I’m sure he will help Lee a lot.”
Johnstone said: "I've always been a fan of Westy. To be honest, it's always driven me a bit doolally seeing him not winning Majors because of his short game."
Westwood has slipped to fourth in the world rankings since the start of July and is keen to improve his performances ahead of next month's Ryder Cup, where he is sure to play a key part in Europe captain Jose Maria Olazabal's plans.
Europe are a best-priced 13/8 with Blue Square
to win the Ryder Cup matches, while the United States are the 11/13 favourites at Pinnacle
who go 57/5 about a tie.