PERTH, Australia -- Paul Casey has had his appetite whetted for European Tour success and is hoping to be at the right end of the table again at this week's ISPS Handa Perth International in Australia.
The former world No. 3 has struggled for form this season after battling back from a dislocated shoulder suffered in a snowboarding accident last Christmas. But he was back on the right track at last week's Shinhan Donghae Open on the Korea Golf Tour with a third-place finish, which has given him a boost for this week's event at Lake Karrinyup Country Club.
The ISPS Handa Perth International marks the European Tour's return to western Australia for the first time since the 2009 Australian Masters.
"Being in the mix and competing again was fun," he said. "I was frustrated because I had a chance to win and I didn't win. But I've got to remember, I haven't been in that situation for a few months, so I made a couple of mistakes, but that is fine.
"I still think I can win a golf tournament or two before the season's out," he added. "But I'm very much looking at the bigger picture of where I'm going."
Although the accident was undoubtedly a setback, Casey believes it could eventually turn out to have helped his golf.
"In hindsight, maybe it's one of the best snowboard crashes I've ever had because it allowed me to really deconstruct my golf game and go through and look at everything and see what I need to do and what I need to work on to be as good a player as I can be," he said. "This year has been very frustrating, and obviously it was my own fault, but I feel very good sitting here about the way things are going now and the way the future is looking."
Casey has played the Lake Karrinyup course before, finishing tied for 18th at the 2003 Johnnie Walker Classic -- a full 17 shots behind Ernie Els' European Tour record-winning total of 29 under par.
Casey will play his first two rounds alongside Australia's Craig Parry and Swede Johan Edfors, while former Masters champion Charl Schwartzel and American star Jason Dufner are the standout names in the field.
For Dufner, it will be his first tournament since being part of the U.S. Ryder Cup team that was stunned by the European comeback at Medinah three weeks ago. It was a successful debut for Dufner personally, the 35-year-old winning three points out of four, but he admitted it has taken time to recover from the shock loss.
"It's been a tough couple of weeks since the Ryder Cup for myself, and the toughest thing about it is you've got to wait two years until you can play again," he said. "That's a long time for us.
"So there's a lot of different dynamics with the Ryder Cup and failing how we did as a team and losing the event. But I'm looking forward to playing golf again and getting over it and moving past it a little bit."