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Ice-cool Kaymer seals stunning comeback for Europe
Europe retained the Ryder Cup in unforgettable fashion last night, matching the largest-ever comeback on the final day to beat the United States at Medinah.
Wearing navy and white in a tribute to the late Seve Ballesteros, Jose Maria Olazabal’s side produced a sensational recovery from 10-6 down to win 14½-13½, equalling that achieved by the home side at Brookline in 1999.
They won the first five singles and further victories from Sergio Garcia and Lee Westwood meant it came down to Martin Kaymer in match 11.
He led Steve Stricker by one hole playing the 18th and, after leaving himself a six-foot putt to win the match, somehow held his nerve to complete an extraordinary comeback.
Francesco Molinari won the last hole against Tiger Woods to gain a half and ensure Europe won the match outright.
Luke Donald led the way for Europe with a 2&1 victory over Bubba Watson before the visitors’ star man Ian Poulter beat Webb Simpson.
After needing a police escort to reach the course in time for his match, Rory McIlroy – who had got his tee-off time mixed up – overcame Keegan Bradley , while Justin Rose, who was one down after 16, holed a 14-foot putt to complete a sensational birdie-birdie finish and a one-hole win over Phil Mickelson.
Paul Lawrie was a 5&3 emphatic winner against Brandt Snedeker but America hit back with wins from Dustin Johnson over Nicolas Colsaerts and Zach Johnson over Graeme McDowell.
Westwood rediscovered his form to pip Matt Kuchar before Jim Furyk missed a nervy seven-foot putt on the last hole to hand Garcia, who had not led since the second hole of their match, a dramatic one-hole win at the 18th.
Despite a battling fightback from four down, Peter Hanson conceded to Jason Dufner but Kaymer showed nerves of steel at the last to ensure Europe kept their hands on the trophy.
Emotional skipper Olazabal dedicated the victory to his great friend Ballesteros.