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Friday, 12 January 2018
Tommy Fleetwood celebrates with Paul Casey  (Getty Images)
Tommy Fleetwood celebrates with Paul Casey (Getty Images)

Europe recovered from a shaky start to Friday's fourball matches to score the first point of the 2018 EurAsia Cup.

Thomas Bjørn's men had found themselves behind in four matches and all square in the other two early on day one.

But Europe managed to turn things around in the afternoon as the putts flew in all over the course.

Tommy Fleetwood and Paul Casey put the first point on the board with a 4 and 3 victory over Byeong Hun An and Kiradech Aphibarnrat in match one.

The English duo got off to a flying start, going two up courtesy of a birdie from Fleetwood at the first and Casey's long-range eagle putt at the third.

But the Asian pair won the seventh and tenth holes to level things up as the hosts stamped their authority on the competition on Friday morning.

Fleetwood's eagle at the 11th put Europe back in front and they did not look back, winning the 12th, 14th and 15th to pick up the first point.

Asia were still ahead in the next three matches but Europe led in the final two clashes.

Thomas Pieters and Matthew Fitzpatrick were one down against Yuta Ikeda and Gavin Green with three holes remaining, while Alex Noren and Paul Dunne trailed Hideto Tanihara and 18 year old Phachara Khongwatmai by two holes in match three.

And perhaps the biggest surprise of the day was Sunghoon Kang and Poom Saksansin's comprehensive four-hole lead against Ryder Cup stalwart Henrik Stenson and rookie Alex Levy after 13 holes.

But Europe were definitely in the ascendency in the early afternoon, with Rafa Cabrera Bello and Bernd Wiesberger recovering from a two-hole deficit to lead by one against Nicholas Fung and Li Haotong with six holes still to play thanks to some phenomenal play on the greens.

Tyrrell Hatton and Ross Fisher were cruising in the final match of the day, leading Anirban Lahiri and S.S.P Chawrasia by three holes.

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