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Europe Regain The Ryder Cup In Hotly Contested Singles Session

Team Europe have won the Ryder Cup in style at Le Golf National.

With some matches still ongoing, Europe can still bask in the glory of upsetting the odds against a highly-fancied United States team.

The hard work was done over the first two days, in which Europe swept the Friday afternoon foursomes 4-0, and the Saturday morning fourballs 3-1.

Nonetheless, they needed four and a half points from the twelve Sunday singles matches to confirm the win.

As he did in 2016, Rory McIlroy went out first for Europe, but also as in 2016, he lost the opener. This time it was Justin Thomas who saw off the Ulsterman at the death, birdieing the 18th while McIlroy made a six.

See Also:Β Rory McIlroy Concedes Match As USA Get First Point Of The Day

The Americans drew first blood, but better was to come from the hosts.

Paul Casey, who some questioned whether he would play well after a decade out of the fold, fought back valiantly to earn a tie against the scary Brooks Koepka in the second match, with a superb birdie on 17 getting Europe on the board.

Behind them were Justin Rose and Webb Simpson, with the overlooked Players Champion capping off a decent Ryder Cup contribution seeing off a genuine star in the Englishman.

After four straight points on his debut, Tommy Fleetwood was provided with an opportunity to make history. To do so, he would have to knock off another debutant in Tony Finau.

Unfortunately for the Brit, the game Finau wasn’t to be denied, winning seven of the first nine holes with four birdies. There was no shame in this defeat for Fleetwood, but all of a sudden the US were now just a point behind at 10 1/5 to 9 1/5.

Thomas Bjorn’s charges would rally elsewhere though, beginning with the redemption of Thorbjorn Olesen. After losing a Friday morning match in which he actually carried Rory McIlroy, the Dane was benched by his compatriot until today, where he was faced with the daunting task of Jordan Spieth, who had earned three points so far.

Olesen bided his time over the event and unleashed on Spieth, winning 5&4 with a series of birdies and just the one bogey.

Next up was Jon Rahm, who like fellow rookie Olesen was yet to win a point until now. Facing a jaded but dangerous Tiger Woods, Rahm finally had the Ryder Cup moment that many were expecting from him.

Two up at the 16th, Rahm missed a short putt to go two up dormie, but he recovered with a monster drive and birdie on 17 to claim a Tiger-sized scalp at 2&1.

Europe now needed just two points.

Ian Poulter and world number one Dustin Johnson traded holes throughout an excellent match, with Poulter holing some crucial putts to take a one hole lead to the 18th.

He stiffed his approach to the 18th green to ensure victory.

With Europe now just one point away from glory, Francesco Molinari stepped up to provide the magical moment.

It was a perfect storm, with the Italian becoming the first European to win all five matches by being the man to capture the winning point. The win came in strange circumstances, however.

Standing on the 16th tee with a three hole advantage over Phil Mickelson, Molinari won the game via the hapless ‘lefty’ hitting his tee shot into the water and conceding the hole.

What a week, and indeed a year, for Francesco Molinari.

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Author: Chris Kelleher

Student whose interests lie in sports ranging from Darts to MMA, with the likes of Golf, Boxing and Soccer in between. Closet wrestling fan and a lover of sports psychology and stiff jabs.