McDowell’s wary of the dangerman
Martin Kaymer is the Ryder Cup dangerman as far as Graeme McDowell is concerned.
He has put himself on course to become only the second German to play in the Ryder Cup and McDowell is determined that it won't be at his expense.
The 23-year-old, tipped for great things by Bernhard Langer, is up from 10th to sixth on the points table after a second victory of the season at the BMW International in Munich last week, with McDowell missing the cut to slip down to the last automatic place having been on the team since the start of the season.
Both McDowell and Kaymer are in action in the French Open which began at Le Golf National in Paris this morning.
the Kaymer's triumph was quite a relief for him in front of his home fans. As in Abu Dhabi in January, Kaymer led by six with a round to go. But whereas he was never caught there, this time he followed two bogeys on the front nine with a triple-bogey eight on the 11th after making what he admitted afterwards was "a big mistake".
With one to play he trailed Dane Anders Hansen by one, but last season's Rookie of the Year made a two-putt birdie on the par five to tie and did the same for a winning birdie when they went into sudden death.
"I think I have a really good chance now," said Kaymer when asked about his position with 10 events to go in the cup race. A six-shot lead is a lot, but it does not feel like that when you are out there."
Rory McIlroy and Darren Clarke are also in the field in France.
Clarke made a steady start and was level par after four holes this morning.
Meanwhile Ulster boys Dermot McElroy from Ballymena and Lisburn's Matthew McKnight have been selected to represent Ireland at the McGregor Trophy, the English Boys' Under 16 Amateur Open Championship at High Post Golf Club, Wiltshire next week.
It is a strokeplay event over 72 holes but a Nations Cup is up for grabs over the opening 36 holes.
Mourne's Hugh Smyth has again been named on the Irish team for their defence of the European Seniors title.
Smyth played a pivotal role in the Irish win last year after being one down on the 18th but he came back to win his match on the third extra hole to clinch the title.
The event is being played at Shannon Golf Club in August.
European Seniors Team: John Carroll (Bandon), Maurice Kelly (Killeen), Adrian Morrow (Portmarnock), Liam McNamara (Woodbrook), Arthur Pierse (Tipperary), Hugh Smyth (Mourne).