DAVID Howell feels that his new techniques have taken him out of his comfort zone as prepares to tee off in the Irish Open today.

The Wrag Barn pro put in a season’s best display at the Nordea Open in Malmo at the start of the month.

But that came after a terrible run on the European Tour where the 38-year-old missed three successive cuts which forced him to take action.

Howell returned to the drawing board working on new techniques on his all-round game, and while the Swindon star was delighted to finish tied ninth after some impressive putting and iron play, he felt that more work was required on his drive off the tee.

“I didn’t drive well in Sweden,” Howell said. “I have a new swing and it doesn’t feel natural at the moment.

“I know that I’m swinging the club better, but I need to keep working on it so that it does become natural.

“At the moment I’m outside my comfort zone but I that it is going to improve my game.”

Following his 12-under-par performance in Sweden, Howell has not featured on the tour as he dedicated some time to spend with his young family as well as working on his new techniques.

“It has been nice to spend some time with the family,” he said. “They are here with me in Ireland this week as well.

“But it hasn’t just been family time, there has been a bit of golf in between where I have had a bit of coaching to work on my game.

“I was happy with how I putted in Sweden, it was like how everyone thinks I putt and how I know I can putt.

“That hasn’t stopped me for working on it though. I have been out with the tour’s putting specialist Phil Kenyon - I will keep doing that as it is helping me a lot .”

While Howell would like to claim another top 10 finish this week at the Forta Island Resort in County Cork, he is more concerned about showing more improvements.

“The minimum aim is for a top 20 finish with another solid week of golf, I’d be happy with that,” he said.

“The aim is always to be in a good position going in the Sunday.

“Obviously you are always looking to get into the top 10, if you do that then you’ll never go home unhappy.

“Realistcally I just want have a good week and know that I have showed even more improvements with my game.”