Kuala Lumpur, Jan 14 (PTI) Team Europe finally found their rhythm as they steamrolled Team Asia in the singles today to win the EurAsia Cup golf tournament for the second time in three editions.
Winning eight singles and halving another one, Europe emerged 8 to 3 winners in singles to complete a 14-10 triumph at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club.
Asia and Europe were Tied 10-10 in the first edition and then Europe outplayed Asia 18 to 5 in 2016.
For Europe, the unbeaten players were Tommy Fleetwood and Tyrell Hatton, who won all three matches, while Yuta Ikeda with three wins in three matches and Li Haotong with 2 points from three matches were unbeaten.
Beginning one point behind Team Asia, Europe racked up three quick wins through Alex Noren (4&2 against Nicholas Fung), Rafa Cabrera-Bello (4&3 against Gavin Green) and Tommy Fleetwood (2&1 against SSP Chawrasia) to move ahead and were then interrupted only by Poom Saksansin’s shock defeat of Paul Casey 1-up.
Later on, Europe kept piling on the wins, through Henrik Stenson, Bernd Wiesberger and Alex Levy. It was Thomas Pieters who delivered the winning point and then Tyrell Hatton beat Anirban Lahiri for the eighth singles win for Europe.
Late in the day after the Cup had been decided, Asia did win two more matches to make the score closer 10-14.
Team Asia captain, disappointed at losing, said, “Hey, no one likes a loss.”
He then added: “I am very proud, actually. They are a great group of guys. They are all awesome players. It’s just unfortunate that we ran into a buzzsaw today.
“You know, it was tough, with almost every match, we didn’t make enough putts. It looked like every time I watched my players, they were hitting the edges and it seemed like Europe, every time I watched them, they were either chipping in or making a lot of birdies.
“It’s tough to beat them when they are doing that. We are very, very proud of every single one.”
On whether a change in order of the players he field could have put some pressure on Europe, he added, “Whichever order I would have put today, those guys really played well today. It wasn’t a strategic thing.
“I knew they were going to go top heavy, we all knew that. We got Poom to win us a point right off the bat. I don’t know, I think the strategy was fine. I think we just got outplayed, nothing more than that.”
Thomas Bjorn said, “Yeah, it was a fantastic first couple of days. These kind of events always become closer than you think sometimes, and that’s always good to know.
“You play for very few points the first two days and then you play for a lot of points on Sunday, and that’s the way these events are. It can swing very much on the last day and we showed today that if you are good and strong on Sundays, you can win these things.”
Results of singles: Noren bt Fung 4&2; Casey lost to Poom 1-up; Fleetwood bt Chawrasia 2&1; Stenson bt Tanihara 2&1; Cabrera-Bello bt Green 4&3; Wiesberger bt Phachara 2&1; Levy bt Kiradech 3&1; Pieters bt Byeong-hun 1-up; Hatton bt Lahiri 2&1; Fitzpatrick halved with Kang; Fisher lost to Ikeda 1-up; Dunne lost to Haotong 3&1.
Final result: Europe beat Asia 14-10.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.