Martin Kaymer cruises to victory in the U.S. Open at Pinehurst
The German wins by eight shots from Erik Compton and Rickie Fowler
Kaymer becomes the first German player to win the U.S. Open
Compton had two heart transplants before making the PGA Tour
Germany’s greatest golfer tried time and time again to conquer the U.S. Open, and failed.
But where Bernhard Langer fell short, Martin Kaymer succeeded, becoming the first German to ever get his hands on the feted trophy.
Kaymer has already made it to world number one, bagged his first major at the U.S. PGA Championship and sunk the winning putt in a Ryder Cup before he is 30.
Langer did win the Masters twice in his illustrious career but now his successor has two of the four major titles in his back pocket after an emphatic win at Pinehurst.
Kaymer laid the foundations for victory by recording the lowest score over two rounds in the tournament’s history and duly kept his nearest challengers at arm’s length to win by an incredible eight shots.
Erik Compton, who had two heart transplants before joining the PGA Tour, finished in a tie for second with fellow American Rickie Fowler.
“We have almost a German grand slam – only the British Open is missing,” Kaymer said after finishing on nine under.
“To win the Masters is a huge thing and obviously that’s why I need to adjust a few things in my swing in order to play better golf there.
“Winning the U.S. PGA and winning this one now I hope it will make Bernhard proud and all of Germany proud.
“Overall it was a very nice week, a very nice day. Credit to the fans because it was very fair to play.
“I didn’t make many mistakes in the last two wins I had in America, especially this week. I played very solid the first two days and that gave me a very nice cushion for the weekend.
“I was very happy with the way I kept it together yesterday and that gave me a cushion for today.”
Kaymer never looked like relinquishing the five-shot lead he held going into the final day and was one of only a clutch of players who posted under par rounds.
Two birdies and two bogeys in the opening 10 holes consolidated his position before back-to-back birdies on 13 and 14 edged him further ahead.
With a challenge from Fowler or Compton failing to materialize, the German could enjoy the closing holes knowing the title was his and he rolled in a par putt on the final green to seal the deal.
It marks an incredible return to the top of the game for a man who drifted down to 63rd in the rankings after a slump in form.
But after a stellar start to the season, Kaymer has become the first man to win both the Players Championship, regarded as the unofficial fifth major, and the U.S. Open in the same season.
Compton meanwhile has had a very different journey to the top table in golf after undergoing two heart transplants
The 34-year-old was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy at the age of nine, a condition that limits the heart’s capacity to pump blood, and had his first transplant three years later.
He had another just as his career was taking and has battled to secure a berth on the tour, his second place at Pinehurst his biggest achievement in the sport to date.
“It felt like a sacred place this week,” Compton said on Sky Sports. “I’m speechless, really. The support I got gave me goosebumps from tee to green.
“It’s a real special moment. I’ve never got this far along in my story and it hasn’t really sunken in yet. I’m just thrilled.
“I was playing for second, I think we all were playing for second. I hit the ball really well from tee to green.
“I didn’t know I’ve got into the Masters so this is just a career-opening thing for me, for me to be able to put myself on the map and prove I’m not just a guy with two heart transplants.”