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Westwood stumbles in bid to win at Wentworth

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With one of his best opportunities to win at Wentworth, Lee Westwood instead endured more frustration at the European Tour’s flagship event.

The Englishman raced out to a two-stroke lead early Sunday, but tumbled down the leaderboard with a closing 40 to fall into a tie for ninth at the BMW PGA Championship. At 7-under 281, he finished three shots out of a playoff.

“I’m struggling in my swing a little bit at the moment,” he told reporters afterward. “When you’re in the last round, it just gets found out. … I haven’t seen somebody for a while now, and maybe I just need a professional opinion on it, another set of eyes looking at it.”

Westwood, who moved his family from his native England to South Florida at the end of last year, is now 0-for-20 at the European Tour’s flagship event. One of the hometown favorites, he has two runner-up finishes at Wentworth, in 2000 and ’11.

Westwood entered the final round tied for the 54-hole lead, continuing the good form he has displayed over the past month and a half, when he has racked up top 10s in each of his past four starts. The 40-year-old hasn’t won since last year’s Nordea Masters.

On Sunday, Westwood built a two-shot lead after making birdie on Nos. 2-4. After back-to-back bogeys on 6 and 7, he rebounded with a birdie on No. 8 to make the turn with a share of the lead.

But he bogeyed the 11th hole, then carded a double-bogey 7 on No. 12 and dropped another shot on the 14th to fall four shots behind. He birdied the last to close with 73, and was one of only two players in the top 31 to shoot an over-par final round.