EurAsia Cup: Asia comeback leaves Europe trailing by one point


The Indian pair of Anirban Lahiri and S.S.P. Chawrasia suffered a 3&2 defeat at the hands of Sweden's Henrik Stenson and England's Tommy Fleetwood in the first match while Thailand's Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Korea's Byeonghun An went down 2&1 to England's Paul Casey and Tyrrell Hatton in the second match.

Hideto Tanihara of Japan and Phachara Khongwatmai of Thailand, the youngest player on Team Asia at the age of 18, also secured victory on the 18th hole when they beat Alex Noren and Paul Dunne by two holes.

Arjun, an eight-time victor on the Asian Tour, also said Thailand's Poom Saksansin and South Korean Kang Sunghoon in match four against Team Europe helped give Team Asia a much-needed early boost.

The last time the event was played, a European team led by Northern Irishman Darren Clarke romped to an 18 1/2-5 1/2 blowout win over their Asian counterparts in the second edition of the biennial matchplay contest in 2016.

Thomas Bjorn's Europe side found themselves one point behind after the completion of day one of the EurAsia Cup with his side struggling to dominate the fourballs.

"It was a really good morning, we played really solid".

"I believe in all 12 of them, as I always will". "We have got to go out and put some blue on the board and try to win the singles".

"I would say that this team is very capable of winning the Singles but we are getting a good fight this week, that's for sure. We are slightly disappointed with the outcome today but I'm sure we can rise to what's ahead of us tomorrow", said Bjorn. "Not quite what we were looking for".

"You saw how early on, everybody was kind of down and losing a few matches early".

"And when you're just one or two down in match play, you can easily flip that, and they did".

As golf in Asia continues to grow at a rapid rate, the amount of players from the region making a positive impact on tours around the world points to a bright future for the sport and adds credibility to the EurAsia Cup.

Bernd Wiesberger and Rafa Cabrera Bello did manage to settle the nerves by halving their fourball match against Nicholas Fung and Haotong Li. At this stage, it looked like Europe was ready to pull away.

Among the notable upsets on Friday were Kang Sung-hoon and Poom Saksansin running Stenson and Alexander Levy off the course after 13 holes, while Fitzpatrick and Pieters fell, 2 and 1, to Ikeda and Gavin Green.

"No-one was like four or five down after five or six holes or anything like that".