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Wednesday 17
January

Golf

Asia out in front in EurAsia

13th January 2018, 15:01 by Chris Rivers

Europe trail Asia by one shot after the opening day of the EurAsia Cup after surprisingly losing the fourballs 3½-2½.

Thomas Bjorn's European side were expected to make light work of an inexperienced Asian squad at the Glenmarie Golf & Country Club and the Dane will have been disappointed to see some of his potential Ryder Cup picks under-perform in Kuala Lumpur.

While the pairing of Tommy Fleetwood and Paul Casey saw off Byeong Hun An and Kiradech Aphibarnrat 4&3, and Tyrrell Hatton and Ross Fisher got the better of India's Anirban Lahiri and SSP Chawrasia 5&4, the rest of Europe's players struggled.

There was a resounding 5&4 defeat for Henrik Stenson and Alex Levy against rookies Sunghoon Kang and Poom Saksansin in match four while Ryder Cup team-mates Matt Fitzpatrick and Thomas Pieters lost 2&1 to Gavin Green and Yuta Ikeda, who made crucial birdies at 15 and 17 to secure the point.

Asia's third point came via veteran Hideto Tanihara and teenage star Phachara Khongwatmai, who held off a late surge by Alex Noren and British Masters champion Paul Dunne.

The hosts then ended the opening day in fine style as Li Haotong's stunning final hole birdie secured a half for himself and Nicholas Fung against Rafa Cabrera Bello and Bernd Wiesberger.

Europe, who won the last edition of the EurAsia Cup by 13 points, will need an improved showing in Saturday's six foursomes and Bjorn admits some of his team should not be happy with their performances.

"I've been talking to the guys all week that we expect them to come out firing," said Bjorn. "Expect them to be 100% up for this and that they are going to go out and play some good golf.

"When I look at the scoring in the groups I feel like a couple of guys might feel like they should have done better, but in general there was a lot of good golf from our side."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Chris Rivers is an experienced reporter who closely follows both Arsenal and Wales Rugby Union team. As well as in-depth football and rugby knowledge, Chris is an avid American Football, Formula One and boxing fan.

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