McDowell relishing return to P...

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McDowell relishing return to Pebble Beach

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Graeme McDowell insists he's not going to Pebble Beach this week to 'make up the numbers' or to just 'enjoy the views'.

The Northern Irishman goes into this week's US Open on the back of securing his place at the Open at his home course of Portrush by finishing in the top-10 at the RBC Canadian Open last weekend.

McDowell says having his spot at the Open assured, he's been able to relax in the build-up to the third major of the season.

“As these weeks started to crunch on and I hadn’t got the job done, the pressure was going to build.

"I certainly didn’t want to be in Scotland, Last Chance Saloon, going: This is it.”

Pebble Beach was the scene of his US Open success in 2010 and 'G-Mac' is hoping to repeat the trick this week.

"It goes without saying I won once around here, I obviously feel like my game suits this golf course.

"And I'm certainly not here to take the views in as much as I'm here to compete. I'm looking forward to the challenge of trying to dissect this golf course and getting myself in position to contend this weekend.

"I've been working hard on my game the last couple of years and one of my big goals is to get myself back there on the back nine on Sunday afternoon in the not too distant future.

"I'd love another run at the top of the game, get myself back in the top 50 in the world and see if I can maybe get another big one before it's all said and done."

McDowell will play alongside fellow former US Open winner Dustin Johnson and five-time major champion Phil Mickelson for the first two rounds in California.

“I think four or five months ago, if you’d have told me you’re on the first tee with Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson this week at the US Open, where my game was or where my confidence level was, I would have been very intimidated, no doubt about it.

“Confidence is one of these very fragile things, you know, it certainly goes away a lot quicker than it comes back.

“It’s certainly been a slower process than I imagined getting the confidence back. It is coming.

“And I come into this week feeling very good about my game, looking forward to the challenge of teeing it up with two great players on Thursday and Friday, and trying to dissect this golf course and get myself in position to hopefully be able to compete this weekend.”


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