Tuesday 23 May 2017

Westwood hails battling Kaymer

Lee Westwood, right, and Martin Kaymer after winning the first fourball at Celtic Manor. Photo: PA
Lee Westwood, right, and Martin Kaymer after winning the first fourball at Celtic Manor. Photo: PA

Lee Westwood paid a glowing tribute to his German playing partner Martin Kaymer after striking Europe's first Ryder Cup blow against the United States at Celtic Manor.

A 3&2 victory over Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson got the European victory bid up and running following a weather-ruined first day yesterday.

And Westwood also reported no ill-effects from his recent injury - a torn right calf muscle - that initially raised Ryder Cup fitness concerns about him.

"The partnership worked really well," he said.

"I get on really well with Martin. He is a fantastic player and he has got a lot of bottle.

"You can see why he has won a Major championship already. When he was needed in the middle of the round he holes some good putts and made some good birdies."

Westwood and US PGA champion Kaymer dominated following today's resumption, sending Mickelson and Johnson back into the clubhouse before 9.30am.

And Westwood was delighted after claiming a 15th Ryder Cup win in his 30th match.

"I was a little bit apprehensive," he added.

"I didn't know what to expect, having not really played competitively since the Open championship. I played at the Bridgestone, but only a couple of rounds, and I was struggling with my leg there.

"So I came into it a little bit sort of unsure, but I played well in the practice rounds and got straight into it.

"It feels great. These little breaks are good because I can go in and have a bit of treatment.

"I am not feeling it (calf) at all, but it's just nice to have these little breaks.

"Lots can happen today. There are a lot of points to play for, and hopefully we can come out at the end of the day in front."

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