Highly-ranked European duo Rory McIlroy and Sergio Garcia avoided going pointless on day one of the Ryder Cup with a late fightback against Team USA's Rickie Fowler and Jimmy Walker in this afternoon's foursomes.
© Getty Images
The opening two holes were halved against Fowler and Walker before the American duo made a mess of the third to edge Europe into the lead.
At the tough par-four fifth, Garcia wildly snap-hooked his drive out of bounds, and even though Fowler and Walker themselves could only make bogey, it was still better than the European score.
Garcia responded to his errant tee shot on the previous hole with a long birdie putt at the sixth to restore his team's lead in the match. However, the duo would bogey the next hole to surrender the initiative once more.
Holes eight, nine and 10 were halved before the Americans took the initiative and went 2 up with a birdie at 11 and par at 12, which was better than the European bogey.
McIlroy and Garcia pulled one back at the 13th but then struggled on the 15th after Garcia tugged another drive way left of the fairway.
The par-five 16th was halved in birdie fours before world number one McIlroy produced one of the moments of the Cup so far with a massive birdie putt at 17 to ensure that the match was not lost.
The Northern Irishman's drive off the 18th was poor, but fortunately it ricocheted off a tree and sat up in the rough to give Garcia a decent chance to reach the par five in two and the Spaniard did just that with a high, arcing five-wood that stopped dead on the green.
Fowler and Walker were only able to make par, which was one more than the European birdie so the match was halved. Garcia and McIlroy finished with three straight birdies to avoid defeat.