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Kaymer is a big fan of the “old school”, tree-lined course

Kaymer feeling right at home at Royal Selangor


Martin Kaymer is feeling very much at home at Royal Selangor GC, the host venue for this week’s Maybank Championship Malaysia and a layout which reminds him of the courses he grew up playing in his native Germany. 

Royal Selangor, founded in 1893 and re-modelled in 2005, is making its second appearance on The European Tour International Schedule after hosting the 2002 Malaysian Open, and Kaymer is a big fan of the “old school”, tree-lined course.

Kaymer has not won on The European Tour since the 2014 US Open Championship but after deciding to take a holiday to recharge his batteries, having missed the cut in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, the German is feeling refreshed and ready to win again. 

Meanwhile, newlywed Kiradech Aphibarnrat is giving his wife her first taste of what it is like to be married to a player on The European Tour – by delaying their honeymoon to tee up in the US$3 million dollar tournament.

The 26 year old married his partner Tunyatorn Chaiyarat on Valentine’s Day in a ceremony that involved a hot air balloon ride over Singha Park in their native Thailand, and just four days later begins his quest for a second victory on Malaysian soil.

And while that may seem unorthodox to some, Aphibarnrat knows he has the support of his new bride as he returns to the scene of his first European Tour triumph in 2013.

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Key quotes

Martin Kaymer: “I’ve played many times in Malaysia, but this has to be my favourite course here. It’s definitely my kind of course, I grew up playing tree-lined courses so in some ways this place reminds me of home – although it’s a little bit warmer here! You really need to move the ball both ways, and I enjoy the challenge of shaping your shots. You need to hit lots of fairways and then wait for your chances to come along, so it’s a fun course to play. 

“The golf course suits me, I had a very nice group in the Pro-Am yesterday, we’re staying in a nice hotel, the food is good and everyone seems very happy and smiling, so I have no reason not to relax and feel happy! You always expect a lot from yourself, but hopefully I can handle that this week.

“I practised hard over the winner, sometimes it pays off straight away and other times it takes longer. The last few years, I’ve managed to get off to a fast start, especially in Abu Dhabi, but this time I’ve struggled to find my rhythm. So I took time off last week and went on holiday, and it really helped to clear my head.”

Kiradech Aphibarnrat: “I’ve been staying in contact with my wife on social media. She teaches in Thailand so unfortunately she can’t come this week because her students have exams next week. But my Mum will be here on Friday. I don’t want to keep reminding my wife about the fact that we were meant to be on honeymoon this week, because she will get angry with me! But she also understands my work.

Did You Know?

  • The Maybank Championship Malaysia is the second ‘new’ event on The 2016 European Tour International Schedule after the Australian PGA Championship, which was co-sanctioned with the PGA Tour of Australasia for the first time this season. 
  • Malaysia is where the first co-sanctioned event between the Asian and European Tours took place in 1999 with the Malaysian Open, which was won by Gerry Norquist.
  • The Maybank Championship Malaysia will be the second time that Kuala Lumpur has hosted European Tour completion this year. In January, the EURASIA CUP presented by DRB-HICOM was played at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club.
  • The Maybank Championship Malaysia is the third different official European Tour event to be staged in Malaysia. The other two were the Malaysian Open (1999-2015) and the Iskandar Johor Open (2011).
  •  The Maybank Championship Malaysia is the first of five European Tour events this season with Asian Tour involvement.
  •  The Maybank Championship Malaysia will represent the 18th consecutive season in which the Asian and European Tours have co-sanctioned events.
  •  This will be the second time that Royal Selangor has played host to European Tour competition – the first was the 2002 Malaysian Open.
  •  There are six players competing in the Maybank Championship Malaysia who have won European Tour events in Malaysia. They are: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Arjun Atwal, Thongchai Jaidee, Joost Luiten, Matteo Manassero and Louis Oosthuizen.