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Thursday, 11 January 2018
A tee marker during the first day's fourball matches at the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM at Glenmarie G&CC  (Getty Images)
A tee marker during the first day's fourball matches at the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM at Glenmarie G&CC (Getty Images)

The draw for first round of fourball matches has been revealed during the opening ceremony of the 2018 EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM. 

With Arjun Atwal's strong Asian side hosting an all-star Team Europe captained by Thomas Bjorn, there are plenty of mouth-watering clashes to come on Friday at Glenmarie Golf & Country Club in Kuala Lumpur. 

Match 1 – 08.35: Tommy Fleetwood/Paul Casey vs Byeong Hun An/Kiradech Aphibarnrat

“Match

In what promises to be a barnstorming opening clash, reigning Race to Dubai champion Tommy Fleetwood pairs up with 13-time European Tour winner Paul Casey to take on 2015 BMW PGA Champion and former Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year, Byeong Hun An, who is joined by three-time EurAsia Cup player and former Paul Lawrie Match Play winner, Kiradech Aphibarnrat. There are few more seasoned competitors in this format than Casey, who has as much professional match play experience (59 individual and 23 team matches) as Team Asia combined (52 individual, 30 team matches).

Match 2 – 08.50: Thomas Pieters/Matt Fitzpatrick vs Yuta Ikeda/Gavin Green

“Match

Despite a victory for the Americans at Hazeltine, Thomas Pieters set a Ryder Cup rookie record by winning four points on his professional team match play debut in 2016. The Belgian is out second with another man who made his debut in that biennial clash, Matt Fitzpatrick, who returns to Kuala Lumpur after playing here two years ago. They'll face World Number 36 Yuta Ikeda of Japan - a 19-time winner on the Japan Golf Tour - and Malaysia's own, Gavin Green, who topped the 2017 Asian Tour Order of Merit. 

Match 3 – 09.05: Alex Noren/Paul Dunne vs Hideto Tanihara/Phachara Khongwatmai

“Match

Winner of the 2017 BMW PGA Championship, Alex Noren has Irish rookie Paul Dunne for company in their first match as that trans-continental pairing go head-to-head with 14-time Japan Golf Tour champion and 2017 WGC-Match Play semi-finalist, Hideto Tanihara and Thai debutant Phachara Khongwatmai, who lost out only to Brett Rumford in the final of the inaugural ISPS Handa World Super 6 in Perth last year.

Match 4 – 09.20: Henrik Stenson/Alex Levy vs Sunghoon Kang/Poom Saksansin

“Match

At World Number Nine, Henrik Stenson is the highest-ranked player in the field this week, and he plays his first EurAsia Cup match with French rookie Alex Levy, who won his fourth and most recent European Tour title at last year's Porsche European Open. They'll take on Korea's Sunghoon Kang, who finished 59th on the US PGA Tour last year, and Thailand's Poom Saksansin, who is one of four rookies in Team Asia under the age of 25 this week.

Match 5 – 09.35: Rafa Cabrera Bello/Bernd Wiesberger vs Nicholas Fung/Li Haotong

“Match

Another man who shone brightly at the 2016 Ryder Cup, Rafa Cabrera Bello will play the opening fourballs in the company of Bernd Wiesberger, one of three men in Bjorn's side returning from the dominant European victory here two years ago. The Spanish/Austrian duo will face Malaysia's Nicholas Fung, a veteran of three EurAsia Cups now, and World Number 59 Li Haotong.

Match 6 – 09.50: Tyrrell Hatton/Ross Fisher vs Anirban Lahiri/S.S.P Chawrasia

“Match

After battling it out for victory in two consecutive weeks last autumn, the all-English pairing of Tyrrell Hatton and Ross Fisher are partners on Friday against another three-time EurAsia Cup competitor in Anirban Lahiri and four-time European Tour winner S.S.P. Chawrasia.

“Match-Ups”

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