McIlroy/McDowell one up at turn


World No.1 Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell were one up at the turn for Europe against Americans Jim Furyk and Brandt Snedeker in the first of Friday mornings foursomes at the Ryder Cup.
The US pair drew first blood at the par-three second after McDowell’s request for relief from a sprinkler head was denied after a lengthy delay which saw all four players arguing. McDowell over-cooked his chip and McIlroy missed the putt coming back. But it was back to level at the fourth when McIlroy chipped in for birdie drawing an appreciative high-five from his playing partner.
McDowell then supplied the ammunition at the sixth with a stunning approach to three feet and the ensuing birdie was enough to put the Ulster duo one up. A McIlroy 10-footer made it four birdies in a row for the European team at the seventh although it was not enough to win the hole. Snedeker sunk a five-footer for birdie at the par-three eighth to level the match, but his approach to the ninth bounced off a sprinkler head and flew well over the green to hand the Europeans a one hole lead at the turn. McIlroy made his debut in the event with McDowell at his side two years ago in Wales when they won one, lost one and halved one together. Veteran Furyk and the in-form Snedeker, a rookie who won the Tour Championship at Atlanta last weekend, were playing together for the first time.