Europe recover at Ryder Cup

Westwood and Donald lead fightback before bad light cuts short third session of weather-hit tournament.

    Westwood celebrates a win in the fourballs as Europe kept themselves in the game against holders US [AFP]

    Lee Westwood and Luke Donald set the tone as Europe made a storming fightback in the unfinished third session of the weather-hit Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor on Saturday, leading in all six matches.

    Trailing holders the United States 6-4 after the rain-delayed foursomes were completed earlier, Europe rallied superbly in the two foursomes and four fourballs when play was halted in fading light.

    Britons Westwood and Donald, in the top foursomes encounter, were four up on American heavyweights Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker after nine holes.

    Woods and Stricker had won their first two matches of the week but, with the world number one struggling for form on Saturday afternoon, the Americans were four over par with their own ball.

    "It's a shame it got dark," world number eight Donald told reporters after he and Westwood had birdied the first two holes.

    "It was great to see so much blue (for Europe) on the board. I think it motivated all of us."

    Northern Irishmen Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy, who birdied the par-three seventh after McDowell struck his tee shot to four feet, were three up on Zach Johnson and Hunter Mahan after seven holes of their foursomes.

    Jubilant

    The Europeans, cheered on by jubilant fans, were also in control of the four fourball encounters that were included by organisers in a revamped format for the third session to try to make up for lost time.

    Padraig Harrington and Ross Fisher were one up on Jim Furyk and Dustin Johnson after eight holes while Peter Hanson and Miguel Angel Jimenez were two up on Bubba Watson and Jeff Overton after six.

    Italian pair Edoardo and Francesco Molinari, the first brothers to be paired together at the Ryder Cup since Charles and Ernest Whitcombe in 1935, were one up on Stewart Cink and Matt Kuchar after five holes.

    In the bottom fourball match, Britain's Ian Poulter and German Martin Kaymer were two up on Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler after four holes.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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