• The Royal Trophy, Day One

Europe make dominant start in Brunei

ESPN staff
December 14, 2012
The Molinari brothers were in form on Friday © Getty Images

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Europe dominated the opening foursomes at the Royal Trophy on Friday to take a 3½-½ lead against Asia after the first day in Brunei.

European team captain Jose Maria Olazabal was the only man not to win his match - as the Spaniard and compatriot Miguel Angel Jimenez were held to a half with the strong Asian pairing of YE Yang and Kyung-tae Kim, following a birdie at the 18th from the home duo.

But all the other European pairings emerged victorious - with Henrik Stenson and Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano producing the biggest victory of the day, a 5&4 demoltion of Ryo Ishikawa and Sang-moon Bae.

It was a remarkable performance from the partnership, who were eight-under par by the time the match came to a conclusion at the 14th.

Described as Europe's "secret weapon" by captain Olazabal ahead of the event, the Italian pairing of brothers Edoardo and Francesco Molinari delivered the opening point with a 2&1 victory over Yoshinori Fujimoto and Wu Ashun.

The duo were one-down after eight holes, but a run of five successive birdies from there to the 14th - an impressive feat considering the alternate shot format - laid the platform for success.

The other match saw Ryder Cup hero Nicolas Colsaerts and team-mate Marcel Siem sneak a slender one-up victory over Jeev Milkha Singh and Kiradech Aphibarnrat.

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