Wednesday, 04 December 2013
Martin Kaymer  (Getty Images)
Martin Kaymer (Getty Images)
Martin Kaymer hopes to avoid finishing 2013 without a trophy by successfully defending his Nedbank Golf Challenge title in Sun City.

The former World Number One is making his first appearance of the 2014 Race to Dubai, having not won during the 2013 edition despite seven top-ten finishes.

And the German is keen to get back to winning ways at a venue where he recorded his only victory of 2012.

“Last year was my last chance, this year is my last chance, so I like being under pressure,” said Kaymer, ahead of the tournament appearing on The European Tour International Schedule for the first time.

“It would be nice to finish as high as possible and a victory would be the ultimate. At the end of the day you have to wait for your chances; I can’t push it. 

“Last year I made a couple of mistakes here and there, but I could still win. You really need to be patient and wait for the chances, and hopefully that will be enough. That’s the goal again this week.

“Coming here is not just a tournament that we play, it’s really a great experience. Nedbank and Sun International invited me to a safari last weekend and they really take care of us. It’s an experience I don’t get a chance to go through anywhere else in the world.”

The former US PGA Champion may have impressed at Gary Player Country Club 12 months ago, but surprisingly the 28 year old does not feel the lay-out is one that particularly suits his game.

And Kaymer is aware that he faces a stiffer challenge this time around, with the limited field having been swelled to 30 players.

“It’s a good golf course, but I’m a little surprised I have done well in the past, because a lot of holes don’t suit my eye,” added Kaymer. 

“I enjoy coming here because it’s the last tournament of the year and you can put everything into it. 

“They extended the field this year and that means more competition. I think that makes it more interesting for the spectators. 

“If you have more players from different continents, even some guys who have never been here before, it’s a nice feel.”

Having dipped to 38th in the Official World Golf Ranking, Kaymer is also hoping that a strong end to the year can put him on the right trajectory to return to the top of the game in 2014.

He continued: “I think the first step is to win tournaments again and then it will take care of itself. If it happens again that would be good, because it’s a nice position to be in. 

“There’s a lot of pressure every week you play, because you are the best player in the world and you should win the tournament.

“It’s a great experience being number one in the world. You get to meet a lot of people and experience a lot of things. What comes with it is very interesting, but very difficult at the same time. Now I would be much better prepared than I was back then.”

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1BJÖRN, ThomasDEN18-20
T2GARCIA, SergioESP18-18
T2DONALDSON, JamieWAL18-18
4STENSON, HenrikSWE18-16
5DE JONGE, BrendonZIM18-15
6SCHWARTZEL, CharlRSA18-13

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