• Ryder Cup

Europe retain hope ahead of final day

ESPN staff
September 30, 2012
Ian Poulter was fired up on Day Two © Getty Images

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Ian Poulter is hoping to continue his impressive second-day form at the Ryder Cup as Europe aim to equal the biggest final-day comeback on Sunday.

The United States take a 10-6 advantage into the third day of play, which will be comprised of some intense singles match-ups. The deficit would have been greater for Europe after Saturday's fourballs had Poulter not starred late on, sinking five consecutive birdies to earn a valuable point.

Poulter and Rory McIlroy clinched victory on the final green over Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson, giving the Englishman a perfect record in this year's competition.

"We needed to get something going," Poulter said. "We had to make birdies and wow - five in a row. It was awesome. I had the world number one backing me up and it allowed me to hit some shots."

The only side to win from four points down going into Day Three was the 1999 United States team.

At that time, Justin Leonard's 45-foot putt against Olazabal on the 17th green sparked a controversial premature celebration as Olazabal still had a putt to keep the game and overall match alive - and this year's American captain Davis Love was among those who came on to congratulate Leonard.

Olazabal, though, insists he is only concerned with this year's event and believes his team can create history by clawing their way to victory in the 12 singles clashes.

"Those last two matches (on Saturday) were massive," Olazabal said. "It gives us a chance - it's been done in the past.

"Things have not gone our way, especially on the greens, but I believe momentum will come our way. Why not tomorrow?"

Since the competition began in 1927, however, the United States have never lost more than a two-point advantage on the last day.

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