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Golf: Ryder Cup: Historic! Europe handles USA

Golf: Ryder Cup: Historic! Europe handles USA


Golf: Ryder Cup: Historic! Europe handles USA

In the morning, hello, in the afternoon: Thanks to a historic race to catch up, Europe’s golfers in a duel with defending champion USA have all chances to win the 42nd Ryder Cup. After a 1:3 deficit in the fourballs, captain Thomas Björn’s team played themselves intoxicated in the following classic foursomes and was 5:3 in front after the first day on the Albatros Course of the Le Golf National near Paris.

Never before in the history of traditional comparison have Europeans been able to win all four Foursomes one day in the current format. The mostly European fans among the more than 60,000 spectators along the course were thrilled by the performance explosion of their heroes. Again and again the “Ole, Ole, Ole” shouts rang out across the picturesque square. “The atmosphere is fantastic,” said the Swede Henrik Stenson impressed.

While the Europeans won hole after hole, the favoured US stars inexplicably folded, and not a single hole was won for about an hour and a half. The stars around the world number one Dustin Johnson and Tiger Woods have to improve considerably if they finally want to achieve their first victory on European soil since 1993 in the English Sutton Coldfield.

At 15.40 all four duels on the scoreboards shone blue for the first time, for the first time all Europeans were in front. This should not change until the end of the day. Sergio Garcia/Alex Noren (Spain/Sweden), who declassed Phil Mickelson and debutant Bryson DeChambeau with 5 and 4, presented themselves in impressive form.

A bench for Europe were British Open Champion Francesco Molinari (Italy) and Tommy Fleetwood (England), who clearly won their two matches and thus contributed two points. Olympic Champion Justin Rose (England), who had lost in the morning with the Spaniard Jon Rahm, took his first point in the afternoon at the side of his usual partner Henrik Stenson with 3 and 2 against the world number one Johnson and Rickie Fowler. With that they were two holes before the end unassailable with three hole wins in front.

Tiger Woods wasn’t in the Foursomes anymore. The US superstar, who had been brought into the team by captain Jim Furyk by wildcard, adapted to his mostly weaker performances in the Ryder Cup and conceded the only defeat of the Americans in the fourballs alongside US master winner Patrick Reed after a good start against Molinari/Fleetwood.

“You have to make birdies at the Fourball. That’s what we did at the beginning, on the second nine holes it turned over,” said the 14-time Major winner, who celebrated his 80th victory on the US tour last Sunday. Nevertheless, Woods was a fighter: “My game is good, the putting feels good. I’ll be there when the captain needs me.”

On Saturday, four Fourballs (from 8.10 a.m.) will be on the programme again in the morning, followed by the Foursomes in the afternoon (from 13.50 p.m.). The USA need 14 points from 28 games to triumph on the Old Continent for the first time since 1993. Europe needs 14.5 points to win.

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