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Westwood takes responsibility for heavy defeat

After he and Thomas Pieters were trounced on the first day of the Ryder Cup, Lee Westwood said: “I played poorly and Thomas played well.”

Thomas Pieters and Lee Westwood on day one of the Ryder Cup.
Thomas Pieters and Lee Westwood on day one of the Ryder Cup.

RYDER CUP VETERAN Lee Westwood said he was to blame for the thumping 5 and 4 defeat he and Thomas Pieters suffered at the hands of Dustin Johnson and Matt Kuchar on Friday.

The United States sensationally stormed into a 4-0 lead over Europe at Hazeltine by winning each of the initial foursome matches.

While the American pairings in matches two and three were required to come from behind, Johnson and Kuchar were gifted a commanding early advantage against Westwood and Pieters in the morning’s final contest, with the Englishman – so often a strong performer in this event – well below his best.

“Yeah, I’ll take responsibility for that,” said Westwood after the round.

“I played poorly and Thomas played well. He’s got into the Ryder Cup really well and he showed some balls out there and made some putts when we needed to.

“I hit a couple of wild drives early on and missed a short putt on two. And giving holes away, you can’t afford to do that in foursomes, because it’s a tough game to play anyway and you need the momentum.”

Westwood, who is making his 10th appearance in the biennial event, believes Europe can fight back as they seek a fourth successive win.

“Oh yeah, this is only the first morning,” he added.

“Anything can happen in the Ryder Cup. It’s freaky like that. You just need a bit of momentum to go your way.”

US rout Europe in foursomes to surge into 4-0 Ryder Cup lead

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