Everybody's got their own opinions, says Lee Westwood of 'evil money' claim

Colin Montgomerie can still get them all talking on the range, as was evidenced on day two of the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic.

Lee Westwood in action during the second round of the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic at Emirates Golf Club. Picture: Luke Walker/Getty Images.
Lee Westwood in action during the second round of the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic at Emirates Golf Club. Picture: Luke Walker/Getty Images.

On this occasion, the big Scot had stirred up the pot with his remarks about the Asian Tour having been boosted by a $200 million investment from the Saudi Arabia government’s Private Investment Fund.

"It's a shame it's come to this,” he told BBC Sport. “We used to work well with the Asian Tour and now we are at loggerheads because of money.

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"It's a problematic issue. It's that horrible, evil word, money. The mighty dollar ruling people's hearts and minds.

"We never played the game for money as such on the European Tour [now DP World Tour] when I first started out. I was trying to see how much better I could get as a golfer. Now it's all about that evil word, money.

"It's a shame. Let's hope the European Tour is closer to the PGA Tour than we've ever been before and we can fight it off."

Lee Westwood is among the players competing in next week’s Saudi International, which is now part of the Asian Tour schedule after being held for three years on the European Tour.

“No,” replied the Englishman, speaking after the second round at Emirates Golf Club in Dubai, to being asked if he’d seen Montgomerie’s comments, having not really had a chance due to being in the morning wave.

Told that he’d talked about “evil money”, Westwood added: “Everybody's got their own opinions.”

Westwood, who has come close in the past in the Desert Classic without managing to get over the finishing line, is delighted to be back in the mix again after opening with two 69s. Even more so considering he was floored by Covid last month.

Admitting he felt tired after his second circuit, the 48-year-old, who is asthmatic, said: “Monday last week in Abu Dhabi is the first time I've walked 18 holes since playing in Houston (in mid-November). I don't feel like I can get as much air into my lungs at the moment and it is draining.”

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