Walker Cup Day 1

GB&I lead by two points after day 1 of the 47th Walker Cup

September 07-08
Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake Merseyside
Day 1 Scores
Day 2


Great Britain and Ireland hold a two point advantage over the United States of America at 7-5 after day one of the 47 th Walker Cup at Royal Liverpool.


Craig Watson’s side need six points from tomorrow’s foursomes and singles matches to win back the Walker Cup after losing to the USA two years ago at Los Angeles Country Club.

“It was a pretty good day. It could have been better but we knew the Americans were going to come back to us. We’re looking forward to tomorrow though.

“No matter what happens in the foursomes tomorrow, we still have to play in the singles. The boys will be up for it.”


Foursomes

The two sides ended the morning foursomes level at 2-2 with each of the four matches concluding at the 17th hole and finishing in a 2&1 scoreline.

Alex Fitzpatrick and Conor Purcell put the first point on the board for GB&I after winning their encounter with John Augenstein and Andy Ogletree. They were 4-up after eight holes and although the Americans cut the deficit in half by winning at the 13 th and 15 th , the remaining holes were halved to give the home side the early breakthrough.


Scottish duo Euan Walker and Sandy Scott started brightly against John Pak and Isaiah Salinda in the second foursomes match but the loss of three holes in a row from the 11 th proved to be pivotal as the Americans claimed their first point of the match.

The all-English pairing of Conor Gough and Harry Hall were never behind in their match against Akshay Bhatia and Stewart Hagestad and they won GB&I its second point of the session after remaining in control throughout the contest.

Similarly, Alex Smalley and Brandon Wu dictated play for the USA in their match against Thomas Plumb and Tom Sloman, picking up wins on the 7 th and 10 th holes to go 2-up. Although they dropped a hole at the 12 th , a birdie on the 15 th restored their two hole lead and they never looked back to give the visiting team its second point.


Singles

Fitzpatrick rallied from being 2-down after three holes to world number one Cole Hammer, who was rested for the foursomes this morning, to win the first singles match of the afternoon by two holes.

The 20-year-old recovered with birdies at the 4 th and 6 th holes to return the match to all-square and was 2-up with three holes to play after winning the 14 th and 15 th .

The Texan responded with a birdie at the 16 th to reduce Fitzpatrick’s lead but the Englishman extinguished any hopes of a comeback by birdieing the last to claim his second point of the first day and put GB&I 3-2 up in the match.

Walker extended GB&I’s lead after beating Steven Fisk, also rested for the morning foursomes, by two holes as well. The Scot was never behind in the match and had established a comfortable lead after winning three of the first five holes.

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Despite being pulled back to 1-up going down the 18 th , the 23-year-old made sure of the point for Watson’s side after the American conceded the hole.

Augenstein hit back for the Americans with a 2&1 win over Conor Purcell making it 4-3 in the match overall. The US Amateur runner-up was in control for lengthy periods of the contest and a par at the 17 th was enough to record the first point of the singles for the USA.

Scott then claimed a notable scalp for GB&I, defeating US Amateur champion Ogletree by one hole in a match where the Nairn golfer fired in six birdies. He found himself 2-up with three holes to play and although Ogletree won the 17 th , a halve in par at the 18 th gave Scott an important victory to put GB&I 5-3 up.

The away side pulled another point back after Pak edged out Amateur champion James Sugrue, who did not feature in the morning foursomes, by one hole and then Wu defeated Sloman 4&2 to tie the match at 5-5.

With two matches left out on the course, Caolan Rafferty nudged the home side ahead with a 2&1 win over Smalley and then it was left to Gough to claim another point for GB&I, his second of the day, to leave Watson’s side with a two point lead going into day two.



Day 1 Scores
 
Saturday Singles: 2-2
Match
USA Player
Result
GB&I Player
1
Cole Hammer
2 holes
>
Alex Fitzpatrick
2
Steven Fisk
2 holes
>
Euan Walker
3
Andy Ogletree
1 hole
>
Sandy Scott
4
John Augenstein
<
2&1
Conor Purcell
5
John Pak
<
1 hole
James Sugrue
6
Isaiah Salinda
2 holes
>
Conor Gough
7
Alex Smalley
2&1
>
Caolan Rafferty
8
Brandon Wu
<
4&2
Tom Sloman
 
  
Saturday Foursomes: GB&I 7- USA 5
Match
USA Player
Result
GB&I Player
1
John Augenstein
2&1
>
Alex Fitzpatrick
Andy Ogletree
Conor Purcell
2
John Pak
<
2&1
Sandy Scott
Isaiah Salinda
Euan Walker
3
Stewart Hagestad
2&1
>
Harry Hall
Akshay Bhatia
Conor Gough
4
Brandon Wu
<
2&1
Tom Sloman
Alex Smalley
Thomas Plumb
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