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May 18, 2016

Martin Kaymer

Straffan, Co. Kildare, Ireland

Q. What are the challenges this week at The K Club?
MARTIN KAYMER: Challenges, it's obviously after last week, every golf course seems a little bit easier. But you need to -- I think it's very important to hit the fairways, because there are a couple trees in the way on the left and right side of the fairways.

The par 5s, some of them are reachable, but the tricky part will be the putting this week, because I think obviously when the rain comes in in the afternoon rounds, it's going to be those 4-, 5-, 6-footers that are going to be tricky to make.

But it's about acceptance, whatever happens, happens, and you have to move on. Those are my challenges this week.

Q. When we think K Club, we think of 2006 Ryder Cup at K Club. Do you have any memory of that? Do you see it on TV?
MARTIN KAYMER: I watched it on TV but I just finished school. I just turned pro maybe a few months before that, so obviously everybody knows Darren Clarke, that he had tears in his eyes, and he chipped it in, didn't he, on the last hole.

I remember about the atmosphere. Obviously the fans in the U.K., here as well, obviously in Ireland, they are massive golf fans. You could see it already in the Pro-Am here today. It's going to be a great week, and the memories, obviously they are always going to live at The K Club from The Ryder Cup.

Q. Rory McIlroy hosting The Irish Open for the second time. What does him hosting event bring to it?
MARTIN KAYMER: Rory is a big name, not only in golf, but sports these days. A lot of people just see him for the athlete he is and what he has achieved in his last four, five, six years.

But he cares. He's a good person. What a lot of people say, he must be a nice guy, but he really is, and you can see what he does with his foundations. His family involved here. Sean, his manager, they all do a very, very good job. I think he's very underrated sometimes; you only see the achievements of the person.

Q. You've won major championships and big tournaments around the world. This is a special tournament in terms of the support you talked about. What would it mean to win an Irish Open?
MARTIN KAYMER: Well, I've won The Scottish Open and I won in Dunhill at St. Andrews. Haven't won in England yet or in Ireland, so it would be fantastic to win one tournament in one of those countries by the end of my career, because I really, really enjoy playing here on the islands.

It's a massive support, and there's so much spectators and they are so true. They understand. It would mean quite a lot to win here more than sometimes in other countries. I hate to say it, but it's just true, because that's the core of the golf in the U.K.

Q. Darren Clarke has announced that not only Alex Ferguson and various other people, but he's going to involve J├╝rgen Klopp, the Liverpool football manager, in his preparation for The Ryder Cup. Your thoughts on that?
MARTIN KAYMER: I'm excited to meet him. I know he plays golf. Obviously he has a lot of attention now when he went from Dortmund to Liverpool. Expectations are very high. But I like the way he handles the situation. He's very authentic, very normal, and that is what not only the people like, but it's a great inspiration for the kids.

He's not a player, but he's a coach. The way he treats the media is very natural. I think that's the way we all should be a little bit more. But sometimes we get distracted and then we lose ourselves once in awhile, but he seems like he never really did. So to meet him is quite inspiring.

Q. How would you say your spring has been so far? You've had a few more European Tour events with how things shook out last year.
MARTIN KAYMER: Not satisfying so far, because I haven't really competed in a tournament properly. Preparation has been good for the summer, so now I look forward to hopefully all the work and the practise pays off, because I really need to work my way into The Ryder Cup.

In terms of the tournaments coming up now, they are obviously big ones that you want to win, and a few I've won in the past. I've got experience with it and a lot of positive memories. I'm really excited to play all the tournaments now until the Olympic Games.

Q. You were 61st in the world before you won THE PLAYERS in 2014 and had that great summer; you are 64 now. What do you remember of that stretch from THE PLAYERS on that was working so well with your game?
MARTIN KAYMER: Well, it was really, really fun to play golf, in terms of the attitude, it was very positive. It was no holding back, and sometimes if we want it or not, you do sometimes hold back a little bit for whatever reason. It was a great Opener.

It gives me a lot of belief, especially when you lead the U.S. Open after two rounds, knowing what you've done only four or five weeks ago at THE PLAYERS, gives you the belief in a very natural way without faking it with yourself that you can do it.

So it was a great start, and the golf, funny enough, the golf doesn't really feel different right now than it felt two years ago. That's why I'm looking forward to the summer and hopefully the work pays off and the good results come.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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