Poulter and Westwood show their worth #EurAsiaCup

Fri 15 Jan 2016

Poulter and Westwood show their worth #EurAsiaCup

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Shah Alam, Malaysia, January 15: Match play expert Ian Poulter repaid his captain’s faith in him by delivering the first point at the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM as Team Europe opened up a 4 ½ - 1 ½ points lead after the opening day’s Fourball session on Friday.
Poulter dovetailed superbly with Bernd Wiesberger in the top match at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club to run out an easy 4 & 3 win over Anirban Lahiri and Jeunghun Wang, with the European duo combining to shoot five birdies and one eagle.
The win set the mood for Darren Clarke’s men who went on to win three other matches and a halve point, with Danny Willet and Matthew Fitzpatrick being the only pair to suffer a loss at the hands of Thongchai Jaidee and Byeonghun An.
Poulter, who celebrated his 40th birthday earlier this week, was delighted to help put the first point on the board after joining the squad as a captain’s pick.
“Well, it's nice. I guess when Darren said, ‘listen, go out there first and get it done’, that's exactly what we did today. And we dovetailed nicely. We put two balls in play for the most part and we kept them under pressure,” said Poulter, who for long has been Europe’s talisman in the Ryder Cup which he has featured in on five occasions.
Ian Poulter of England Ian Poulter of England
“We holed a few key putts ,especially around the turn, 12, 13, were key holes for us, and obviously that was enough to get the job done. It worked out nicely.
“There's quite a bit of blue on the board. Obviously Asia are having a late rally there, which is nice. It looked very blue early. They are having a rally back and hopefully the boys can keep it blue.”
He paid tribute to Wiesberger, who is hoping to play his way in the Ryder Cup team later in September. “It's a team game, so doesn't matter whether someone makes five birdies and the other person doesn't make any. Bernd holed a couple of very key putts and it's nice, and it's nice to be able to gel like that when you need to. Albeit, you need two balls in play, you know, making putts at the right time is what this format needs. And it was good. It was great to play with him.”
Europe’s other captain’s pick, Lee Westwood, also delivered a point, partnering Chris Wood to a 2 & 1 win over Kiradech Aphibarnrat and S.S.P. Chawrasia. Westwood, a veteran of nine Ryder Cups, said Europe cannot take it easy despite opening a three-point lead over Team Asia.
“I think you take a score line like that, it's quite a big win, and even down to that match being halved rather than a loss, that can mean a lot. At one point out there, I think we were up in all six,” said the former two-time Malaysian Open champion.
“So credit to the Asian lads for fighting back and getting 1 1/2 points. We know we have got a strong team and we know they have got a strong team. We know we have to perform well. There won't be any complacency on our side. We'll just try to come out fast and fresh again tomorrow and try to win that session, as well.”
Ends.