EurAsia Cup: Day one whitewash puts Europe in driving seat
Europe secured a 5-0 whitewash against Asia on the first day of the inaugural EurAsia Cup in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday as captain Miguel Angel Jimenez led by example on the field.
Jimenez put himself out in the first match with fellow Spaniard Pablo Larrazabal and put on a golfing clinic in a 2&1 victory over Asia captain Thongchai Jaidee and fellow Thai Kiradech Aphibarnrat.
Jimenez carded two eagles and three birdies at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club to ignite his side to a clean sweep of the day’s five fourball matches.
Only one match reached the 18th, which saw the Danish pair of Thomas Bjorn and Thorbjorn Olesen defeat Japan's Koumei Oda and Hideto Tanihara by two holes; 10 holes in a row being halved after the European duo went two up on the fifth.
A neat birdie from Oda on the 16th halved the deficit but Olesen saved par from over the green on the 17th, leaving the Asian pair unable to find that necessary birdie on the last.
France’s Victor Dubuisson and Joost Luiten had already secured a 3&2 win over Bangladesh’s Siddikur Rahman and Thailand's Prayad Marksaeng by that point, with one highlight being Dubuisson driving into the water on the par-five 11th. However, nothing was lost as Luiten then hit the pin with his second shot to leave a tap-in for a winning eagle.
With a total of 20 points to play for in the match, Jimenez's side were left needing just five and a half more from Friday's five foursomes matches and Saturday's 10 singles to secure overall victory.