Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines - Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler won the first point of the Ryder Cup for the United States on Friday with a 4 and 2 victory over Rory McIlroy and European rookie Thorbjorn Olesen.
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Both pairings struggled for birdies early on with the match
all-square through seven holes, but the Americans reeled off five
birdies in eight holes to storm into a three-up lead.
Dane Olesen struck his first Ryder Cup tee shot into the water, but
spent much of the match carrying four-time major winner McIlroy, who was
out of form, failing to make a single birdie or win a hole.
McIlroy and Olesen both missed lengthy birdie tries on the 16th hole to end the match with a whimper.
Jim Furyk's US outfit are bidding to retain the trophy and win the
matchplay event on European soil for the first time in 25 years at Le
"We get along very well, our demeanours are very similar on the golf
course," said world number one Johnson of his partnership with Fowler.
"We've practised a lot together, whether it's been here or back at home."
The teams to have won the first point of the competition have gone on
to lift the trophy in 79 percent of Ryder Cups held since 1975.