McDowell 'fizzing' to get back

By Brian Keogh

Graeme McDowell says he's "fizzing" with desire to get back to the top after his amazing Volvo Masters performance.

The Ulsterman 28, lit up the event with an incredible albatross two at Valderrama's 17th.

A closing double bogey wrecked his dream of a first European Tour win for more than three years.

But after climbing 16 places to 109th in the world, "GMac" has set his sights on the summit of world golf in 2008.

Ranked as high as 35th in the world three years ago, McDowell wants to get back into the top 50 again, play in all next year's majors and earn his Ryder Cup place.

Tied for fourth with Padraig Harrington at Valderrama, he said: "I am dying to get back to the kind of golf that excites me. That is why I play the sport.

"Mediocrity doesn't do it for me and doesn't do it for many players. I want to be as good as I can be really.

"I am getting there physically. I haven't been in the best shape of my life the last few years after that car accident in 2005.

"I am fizzed up now to lose a bit of weight and get stronger and fitter. It's onward and upwards."

McDowell holed a 200-yard seven iron at the 17th for the third albatross of his career and the second at Valderrama's feature hole since Miguel Angel Jimenez in 1994.

Now he wants to soar to new heights and use his rivalry with fellow Ulsterman Rory McIlroy to conquer world golf.

He said: "I have only just got to know Rory in the last couple of months and I think it is his attitude to the game and the way he conducts himself is inspirational.

"But I have been working hard all season, probably the hardest I have worked in years.

"That's not to say that I haven't worked hard in the past but I have been a bit more driven this season. My goals have been a bit more clear.

"I see someone like Rory come out with very clear goals and achieving and doing as well as kid of takes me back to my youth a little bit and the way I came out and played well early doors.

"I have had such a good time this week contending in one of the biggest tournaments in Europe and I am excited about what the future holds for me.

"I have a great team of people working with me now and I feel I am right on the way back. I am right on the path that I wanted to be back on and there is some good stuff in store hopefully."

As for his closing double bogey at Valderrama, he is not going to beat himself up too much.

He said: "It was a tough tee shot under the circumstances. I had a lot of adrenaline and while I tried to calm down it was impossible. I have just hit one of the most awesome second shots I have ever hit in my whole life."

At 28, McDowell is burning with desire to improve and add to his two European Tour victories.

He said: "I am heading towards 30 like a freight train. As you get older, you get a bit retrospective in this game and my career has been peaks and troughs - a bit more than most.

" As long as I can see the upward trend I am happy. Maybe the trend has been tapering off a little bit too much in the last couple of years."