Playing with Westy will raise my game, says Schwartzel

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Masters champ Charl Schwartzel is happy to be paired with Lee Westwood in the first two rounds at Royal St George’s as he believes it will make him play better.

“It suits me just fine playing with Lee,” said the South African. “I played with Lee in the third round of the Masters. It’s always nice to play with good players, it sort of picks up your game. I think I’ve got a good draw.”

Schwartzel, who tees off at 2.10pm on Thursday, also said he feels fresh following a three-week break back home in South Africa.

“It’s pretty cold back home but we get clear days with a bit of wind and I figured it would be pretty good practice, which it was. The courses are dry too. I feel good coming into this week.”

Schwartzel played in his first major championship at this same course back in 2003 when Ben Curtis claimed a shock victory. He also won the Brabazon Trophy just down the road at Royal Cinque Ports a year before that has fond memories of the area.

“I’ve got very good memories here. I remember I led The Open after three holes and got such a fright when I saw my name on the leaderboard.”

Schwartzel won his first major championship at the Masters back in April, birdieing the final four holes to win by two shots.

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