Asia make dra­matic turn­around in Malaysia

Sport360 - - News - By Staff Re­porter @Sport360 ed­i­to­

Asia staged a dra­matic come­back against de­fend­ing champions Europe to hang on to a one-point lead in the sec­ond day of the EurAsia Cup in Malaysia.

The re­sult in the four­some matches sets up a tense show­down for to­day’s sin­gles, with In­dian cap­tain Ar­jun At­wal’s team fight­ing for Asia’s first ever vic­tory in the Ry­der Cup-style match play tour­na­ment.

Europe were firmly in con­trol in the early stages yes­ter­day and Asia, who started the day a point ahead, saw their lead van­ish as skip­per Thomas Bjorn’s side won the first three matches.

But vic­tory for Yuta Ikeda of Japan and Malaysia’s Gavin Green proved the turn­ing point for Asia, and they went on to win the fi­nal two games and end the day on 6 1/2 to Europe’s 5 1/2.

At­wal praised his team, say­ing they had “hung in there” in the face of an on­slaught from Team Europe.

“If you asked me if I’m sur­prised or shocked, I’m not. My guys are all champions,” he said.

Race to Dubai cham­pion Tommy Fleet­wood and Swe­den’s Hen­rik Sten­son gave the Euro­peans a strong start by beat­ing In­dian duo Anir­ban Lahiri and S.S.P. Chawra­sia 3-2.

Paul Casey and Tyrrell Hat­ton, both from Eng­land, put Team Europe ahead with a 2-1 vic­tory over Thailand’s Ki­radech Aphibarn­rat and South Korea’s An Byeong-Hun.

A 3-2 vic­tory for Eng­land’s Matthew Fitz­patrick and Bel­gium’s Thomas Pi­eters against Thailand’s Poom Sak­sansin and South Korea’s Kang Sung-hoon ex­tended Team Europe’s lead to two points.

But the tide turned in favour of the Asians with a dra­matic vic­tory for Green and Ikeda.

The pair notched up three birdies on the fi­nal four holes for a one­hole vic­tory over Spa­niard Rafa Cabr­era Bello and Alexan­der Levy of France.

Thailand’s Phachara Khong­wat­mai and Japan’s Hideto Tani­hara beat Ire­land’s Paul Dunne and Alex Noren of Swe­den, and Asia’s come­back was com­plete with a 3-1 vic­tory for China’s Li Hao­tong and Malaysian Ni­cholas Fung.

01 win for Europe and a tie in EurAsia Cup his­tory

Fight back: Yuta Ikeda.

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