Westwood is refreshed and rejuvenated for the new year
World number one Lee Westwood is eager to start the new season in top form when he tees off his 2011 campaign at the Abu Dhabi Championship on Thursday.
The 37-year-old, in his 12th week at the top of the rankings, will also want to banish memories of last year's tournament when he missed the cut.
"I'm just trying to continue where I left off last season," he said.
"I've got the feeling it may be a good week, but I'm not putting pressure on myself, I go out with no expectations."
Westwood is part of a star-studded field at the tournament which features the winners of all four of last season's majors.
Since becoming world number one Westwood has played only three tournaments, finishing second to Ryder Cup team-mate Francesco Molinari in Shanghai, third at the Dubai World Championship and winning by eight strokes at the Nedbank Challenge in South Africa.
"There is a lot of focus on you when you are world number one - it's quite intense and there's a lot to do," he said.
"It was nice to get away, lock the clubs up for four or five weeks, not think about holing three or four-footers for par and get mentally fresh."
However, Westwood admitted that he is already thinking about the US Masters in April.
Last year he finished runner-up to Phil Mickelson in Augusta and he will have a chance to lock horns once again with the world number four in Abu Dhabi.
Mickelson has taken an even longer break than Westwood, having not played since mid-November, and says it is now "time to get back to work".
The American is playing six tournaments in a row, showing that the arthritis for which he received treatment last summer is not as much of a worry as it once was.
"My body feels great and I've been able to practise and work out," he said.
But even allowing for health problems, Mickelson has had only one top-10 finish since the US Open last June and will have to be at his best as he is paired with the winner of that tournament, Graeme McDowell, for the first two rounds in Abu Dhabi.
Open and US PGA champions Louis Oosthuizen and Martin Kaymer - who is defending champion at this tournament - are also paired together.