Saturday, September 26, 2009

McGinley's men charge seven points

clear with only 10 singles to play

Paul McGinley achieved just about everything he must have been hoping for at Saint-Nom-La-Breteche, near Paris today - off the course as well as on it.
McGinley, on the winning side every time he played the Ryder Cup and Seve Trophy, looks set to continue that as a captain after his withdrawal-"weakened" Britain and Ireland team charged into a massive 12 1/2 to 5 1/2 lead over Continental Europe after three days' play.
Only the 10 singles are to come in what is now called the Vivendi Trophy and the holders, even without six stars, need just two points for a fifth successive win.
Off the course, meanwhile, Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie sang the praises of the Dubliner and confirmed he wants McGinley as one of "at least four" assistants at Celtic Manor next year.
"Paul's taken to this like a fish to water. Incredible," said Montgomerie. "His team meetings have been exceptional. He's worked as a psychologist as well and I've been very impressed with him."
More News
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Woods takes narrow lead
Three-day format suits Ryder Cup - Bjorn
Dodd and Donaldson in second spot
Monty wants Continental captain Thomas Bjorn alongside him too - this all presumes they do not qualify for the team as players - regardless of how much of a drubbing the pre-event favourites have been given so far at St Nom-la-Breteche.
Ahead 6-4 overnight, Britain and Ireland totally dominated the day even though Anthony Wall, a winner of his first two games, could not play all day because of shoulder trouble and Simon Dyson needed an afternoon rest after the food poisoning that kept him in bed on Wednesday left him feeling weak again.
Twenty-year-old Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell led off both greensomes and foursomes and won both to take their personal tallies to three points out of four. First they beat Swedes Henrik Stenson and Peter Hanson 2 and 1, then it was Dane Soren Hansen and Soren Kjeldsen by the same margin.
World No 5 Stenson is the top-ranked player on either side and he looked like suffering a fourth successive defeat until he and Hanson won the last three holes to halve with Nick Dougherty and Steve Webster.
A 25-footer from Stenson on the last was badly needed, but then 21-year-old Chris Wood had already made it four wins out of four in the game behind. After twice being successful with Wall, he linked up with Ross Fisher and they recorded a double over Anders Hansen and Francesco Molinari.
Dyson and Oliver Wilson lost their 100 per cent record just before lunch when they bogeyed the last to lose to Alvaro Quiros and Miguel Angel Jimenez. The Spanish pair were kept together for the foursomes, but Continental Europe were left needing a miracle when they lost on the last to Wilson and Robert Rock, who, together with Dougherty, claimed another point for Europe in the greensomes.
Overnight score:
Continental Europe 4, Britain & Ireland 6.
Morning Greensomes
Continental Europe 1, Britain and Ireland 3
Robert Karlsson and Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano lost to Robert Rock and Nick Dougherty 5 & 4.
Henrik Stenson & Peter Hanson lost to Rory McIlroy & Graeme McDowell 2 & 1.
Anders Hansen and Francesco Molinari lost to Ross Fisher and Chris Wood 1 hole.
Miguel Angel Jimenez and Alvaro Quiros bt Simon Dyson and Oliver Wilson 1 hole.
Overall position:
Continental Europe 5, Britain and Ireland 9
Afternoon Foursomes
Continental Europe 0.5, Britain and Ireland 3.5
Soren Hansen and Soren Kjeldsen lost to McIlroy and McDowell 2 & 1
A Hansen and Molinari lost to Fisher and Wood 3 & 2
Stenson and Hanson halved with Dougherty and Steve Webster
Alvaro Quiros & Miguel-Angel Jimenez lost to Robert Rock & Oliver Wilson 1 hole
Overall position:
Continental Europe 5.5, Britain and Ireland 12.5



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