Martin Kaymer joins Rory McIlroy as Seve Trophy absentee

Martin Kaymer
Kaymer's last tour win was the Abu Dhabi Championship in January

Germany's Martin Kaymer has joined US Open champion Rory McIlroy in withdrawing from this month's Seve Trophy in France.

World number five Kaymer was set to be the leading player in captain Jean van de Velde's Continental team.

The biennial matchplay competition, named in Seve Ballesteros' honour, sees Continental Europe play Great Britain and Ireland over four days.

McIlroy withdrew saying he needed two weeks rest from his schedule.

Kaymer said he was feeling the effects of a head cold and he wanted a rest ahead of the Alfred Dunhill Links in Scotland which starts on 29 September.

"I'm defending the KLM Open in Holland this week and I really need a week off after that to get myself fully fit to be able to prepare properly for the Alfred Dunhill Links," he said after finishing runner-up in the European Masters in Switzerland.

"Also I just need to win again. I won earlier this year but I haven't won since so I will try to win again in Holland this week and then try and do the same in Scotland."

The Vivendi Seve trophy is being played at the St-Nom-la-Breteche course, west of Paris, from 15 September. The 10 players on each team are decided by the official world rankings and the Race to Dubai order of merit.

Kaymer is the leading player for Continental Europe in both categories.

After McIlroy's withdrawal from the Great Britain and Ireland team last week, the tournament was given a boost when world number two Lee Westwood and Open champion Darren Clarke committed to playing.

Graeme McDowell and Luke Donald are likely to miss the team event because of their continued participation in the FedEx Cup play-offs on the PGA Tour in the United States.

Paul Casey and Ian Poulter did not progress beyond the second of the four FedEx Cup tournaments and therefore could be available for the Seve Trophy.

The Great Britain and Ireland team will be captained for a second time by Ireland's Paul McGinley, who masterminded a win by five points over Continental Europe in 2009, also at the St-Nom-la-Breteche course.