GLENEAGLES (AFP) – Martin Kaymer believes that lessons learned from Germany’s World Cup football win could help Europe retain the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles this weekend.
Europe captain Paul McGinley surprised many when he chose to have five vice-captains to back him up, with some saying he had gone too far.
But the Irishman was quick to point out that Germany’s World Cup head coach Joachim Loew had a backup staff of 33 at his disposal in Brazil and that had proved to be a winning formula.
Asked for his thoughts on McGinley’s vice-captains, Kaymer replied: “Doesn’t matter if he wants eight vice captains and we win. I wouldn’t care. I think the goal is important. It doesn’t matter how you reach it.
“And the Germans, you know, the way they played the World Cup, the way they were organised.
“I think for a lot of players out here, as well, it’s very, very important that everything is structured.
“Obviously it’s quite nice to see that Paul uses the German way of succeeding in a sport event maybe. I mean, it worked for us in Brazil.”
Kaymer’s last shot played at the Ryder Cup at Medinah two years ago was a career-defining moment when he sunk the putt that ensured Europe would retain the trophy.
It was a six-footer that has now gone down in the Ryder Cup annals, capping as it did the greatest final-day comeback in the event’s long history.
It also was the trigger for Kaymer to revive a career which had flagged after his early breakthrough to win the PGA Championship in 2010 and take the world number one spot.
This year, 29-year-old Kaymer made sure of a third Ryder Cup cap by winning both the Players Championship and his second major at the US Open.
Asked to reflect back on what had been going through his mind as he stood over the Medinah putt, Kaymer said he never had been in doubt that he would sink it.
“It’s one of those things that you cannot miss. It’s difficult to explain,” he said.
“It’s not an option. So it doesn’t even cross your mind that you might miss it. So for me, everything was so clear. I knew exactly what I needed to do, I knew exactly what the line was. The only thing that you need to do is do it.”
At Gleneagles, there are strong indications that the German will be sent out in the company of world number one Rory McIlroy, the two playing together again in Thursday’s final practice round.
Kaymer said he would be happy with that outcome.
“We get along well as people, and I think at the end of the day, it’s very important, especially for the foursomes, because it’s such a tough game to play that you need to get along with the person.
“And it’s not a secret that I get along with Rory.”