'I Needed Something New' - Martin Kaymer Explains LIV Golf Move

The German says the start-up came along at the right time in his career to make the switch

Martin Kaymer at the 2022 LIV Golf Bangkok event
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Martin Kaymer has opened up on why he signed for LIV Golf following a memorable career on the DP World Tour and PGA Tour.

The 37-year-old secured 23 professional wins, including two Majors, before being unveiled among the start-up’s first intake of players for June’s opening event at London's Centurion Club. That success also saw Kaymer reach the World No.1 position in 2011. However, despite an enviable career record, the German chose to turn his back on the traditional tours.

Video: What Is LIV Golf?

Speaking to 5 Live Sport for its All About podcast on the LIV Golf story, Kaymer explained that he wasn't happy with the direction of the PGA Tour and DP World Tours. He said: "I never really picked up my PGA Tour membership properly – I never really liked to live in America for 12 months and that’s what, in my opinion, you need to do in order to compete on the PGA Tour. I’m a huge fan of the European Tour and I really liked all the tournaments and the venues that they used to have, but where the Tour is going now, especially with the cooperation with the PGA Tour, ultimately it will get me back onto the PGA Tour, where I don’t want to be."

Instead, Kaymer turned to the Greg Norman-fronted organisation, which he explained came along at the perfect time in his career. He said: “It was fun, more inspiring, motivating again. I needed something new in my career and doing this for 15 years, playing on both tours, now having a family, I needed something else and then LIV Golf popped up and I thought, 'That’s me.'”

Kaymer famously played a pivotal role in Europe’s Ryder Cup comeback in 2012 to beat the USA – dubbed The Miracle Of Medinah – when he holed a putt on the 18th on the final day as the team overcame a four-point deficit at the start of the day to win. However, despite his history with the competition, he says he has made peace with the possibility he has played his final Ryder Cup tournament.

He said: "I’ve done many Ryder cups, I won a couple of Majors, I had a beautiful career in the traditional way of golf, I would say, and of course, I would like to participate more in those tournaments, but if that’s not meant to be then I’m totally fine with it because it’s a decision that you make to be out here and if that’s the only tour that I’m going to play the next few years, I’m totally happy with that."

However, despite Kaymer’s ease with his future, he still thinks LIV Golf players should be able to compete in the big tournaments - at least for the sake of the fans. He said: “I think the Majors and the Ryder Cup, they should be open for everyone, they should be the best players in the world – they should play in those events. If the European Tour and the PGA Tour want to limit to their people that’s fine with me, because I made a decision to play LIV Golf and that’s it. The people, the fans they want to see the best players in the world. They want to see Dustin Johnson and those guys and that is what those tournaments are made for - to see the best players in the world."

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Mike Hall

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.