A torrential downpour and a 7.5-hour rain delay were the biggest highlights from the first day of the 2010 Ryder Cup, but then again, what do you expect from a golf tournament played in Wales?
Shortly after all four groups teed off Friday morning, play was suspended due to flooded fairways, bunkers and greens. While the Twenty Ten course – a site built specifically for this tournament – has a state-of-the-art drainage system, the rain would not subside and rendered squeegees and umbrellas useless. Golf.com’s Michael Bamberger has more on the Celtic Manor course and its miserable conditions.
At the time of the stoppage, the European side led in three of the four matches and appeared much more comfortable in the aquatic conditions.
But when play resumed – nearly eight hours later – the U.S. team had dried off and regrouped from its sluggish start. Led by the hot hand of Stewart Cink and the rookie duo of Bubba Watson and Jeff Overton, the U.S. swung momentum in its way, and now holds the lead in two matches and forced another one all square.
In an attempt to wrap up the tournament by Monday, the Ryder Cup will turn in a marathon day on Saturday. If all goes as planned, the event hopes to conclude team matches Sunday morning and play the 12 singles matches that afternoon.
Play was eventually suspended Friday night due to darkness. Here’s where the fourball matches stand going into Saturday:
Phil Mickelson/Dustin Johnson vs. Lee Westwood/Martin Kaymer: EUR leads 1 up
Stewart Cink/Matt Kuchar vs. Rory McIlroy/Graeme McDowell: U.S. leads 2 up
Steve Stricker/Tiger Woods vs. Ian Poulter/Ross Fisher: All square.
Jeff Overton/Bubba Watson vs. Luke Donald/Padraig Harrington: U.S. leads 1 up
Coverage begins (all times Eastern) Saturday at 2:30 a.m. on ESPN with NBC taking over the reins at 8:00 a.m.
By the numbers
28 – Points still at stake during the 2010 Ryder Cup, thanks to a tournament realignment agreed upon by both team captains. Golf.com provides all the details.
2 – Gloves worn by Phil Mickelson in Friday morning’s match, one on each hand, for the first time in his career.
5 – Of the seven last Ryder Cups have been won by the team leading after day one.