Kaymer says Langer helped him get used to life in jungle

Thu Sep 25, 2014 8:08am EDT
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By Tony Jimenez

GLENEAGLES Scotland (Reuters) - A few sage words of advice from 2004 European captain Bernhard Langer helped Martin Kaymer get used to life in the Ryder Cup "jungle" after a jittery debut, the U.S. Open champion said on Thursday.

The young German told a news conference that he was taken aback when he first experienced the electric atmosphere and hurly-burly of the biennial match against the United States at Celtic Manor in Wales in 2010.

"Standing on the first tee it was very intimidating for me," said Kaymer on the eve of the 40th Ryder Cup at Gleneagles. "It was too much, I couldn't really handle the whole situation.

"I don't know how to explain it but it was like playing in the jungle a little bit.

"In 2012 I had a very nice conversation with Bernhard and the moral of the talk was, at the end of the day it's just you, the golf ball and the golf course that you have to play. If the people weren't there, that's it, it's pretty simple."

Langer's chat with his fellow German yielded instant dividends when Kaymer holed a knee-trembling, six-foot putt to retain the trophy for Europe at Medinah two years ago.

"We talked about, imagine now if you can use the thousands of people for yourself in a positive way, that they carry you, there's nothing negative about it," added Kaymer.

"I didn't think that clear in 2010, now it's a little bit different. You can use it to raise your game."   Continued...

European Ryder Cup player Martin Kaymer watches his tee shot on the tenth hole during practice ahead of the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles in Scotland September 24, 2014. REUTERS/Toby Melville