Doha - Major winner Graeme McDowell said on Wednesday he is
targeting a return to golf's top table despite a barren few years and a slump to
number 91 in the world.
Speaking ahead of this week's Qatar Masters, the 2010 US
Open winner, who was once ranked as high as number four in the world, McDowell
admitted his recent form has not been "good enough".
"My on-course performance has not been... good enough
the last few years," the 37-year-old told reporters.
"I guess coming to the start of the next few years,
I've tried to view it as a long road back toward the top of the game.
"That's where I want to be again, give myself chances
to win major championships again. I know I've got a lot of things to work
The Northern Irishman, now based in Florida with a young
family, has not won a tournament in almost three years.
He also missed out on selection for last year's Ryder Cup at
Hazeltine, and said he was desperate to be back in the team for 2018.
"I think that certainly was a big week for me to sit at
home and watch that.
"It was very motivating, very inspiring. When I look to
France to 2018, a golf course which I love, I certainly want to be there,
that's for sure."
Despite his loss in form in recent years, McDowell still
remains one of the biggest attractions at this week's tournament in a field
which includes rising stars such as Alex Noren and Tommy Fleetwood as well as
veterans Ernie Els and Jose Maria Olazabal.
Also playing is the European team's 2018 Ryder Cup captain,
This year is the 20th edition of the Qatar Masters, which is
part of the European Tour's "Desert Swing", which sees tournaments in
Abu Dhabi and Dubai as well as Qatar, in the first two months of the season.
Past winners in Doha include Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson and
This year, players will battle it out for a $416 660 first
The 2017 tournament is finishing for the first time on a
Sunday, rather than Saturday to coincide with the final day of the weekend in
the Gulf, to try and bump up global television audiences.