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Match 2 - Saturday Fourballs

Clarke/Poulter lost to Woods/Riley by 4&3 

September 18, 2004

Hole 15 - Riley has a six foot putt for birdie to win the match. Poulter has a putt from 25 feet for birdie but misses. Riley holes his and it is victory for the United States on the 15th, beating Clarke and Poulter 4 and 3.

Hole 14 - Poulter plays a wonderful approach to the 14th to almost exactly the same spot as Haas moments earlier and holes to putt for a win for Europe. They are now three down and still facing a mountain.

Hole 13 - Riley plays a stunning tee shot to two feet and the Europeans need something special to happen if they are to turn this match around. Clarke can't match Riley's birdie and the Americans go four up with five to play and they can sense victory.

Hole 12 - Woods whips one over the trees on the par five but comes up short in the bunker. Riley makes the birdie four and Poulter has a putt from 12 feet but misses on the left. Clarke and Poulter fall a further hole behind and lie three down with six to play.

Hole 11 - Woods finds the fairway bunker off the tee and comes up well short of the green in two. Woods plays a sensational chip, spinning it back to within inches of the hole for a par four. Poulter from 25 feet to win the hole, gives it a run and it goes well past the hole. Clarke has a putt from 12 feet for birdie but it misses on the left and the hole is halved.. The US pair remain two up.

Hole 10 - Riley almost holes his chip from the back of the green but it runs past and the hole is halved in four between Clarke and Woods. Clarke continues to look for his first birdie of the day.

Hole 9 - Woods finds the right bunker on the ninth and plays a clever shot, using the slope to bring the ball back down to within inches of the hole. Poulter chips from a very tough position at the back of the green and it runs 12 feet by. Clarke safely makes his three for the half and Europe remain two down at the turn.

Hole 8 - Woods finds the fairway bunker on the eighth but plays a brilliant fairway bunker shot seven feet right of the pin. Poulter holes from 15 feet for his par to put the pressure back on Woods. The putt slides by on the left side and the putt is halved in four. Europe remain two down.

Hole 7 - Woods has a long putt for birdie from about 50 feet and runs it six feet left of the hole and has his work cut out for a par. But neither Clarke nor Poulter can take advantage of their birdie putts and Riley makes par and America remain two up. Europe are struggling to get into the game.

Hole 6 - Neither of the Americans find the green on the short par four sixth hole. Poulter finds the same bunker as Westwood and Garcia earlier. Riley plays a great chip and looks a certainty for a birdie. Clarke hits his bunker shot five feet past. Poulter recovers well and holes from three feet for a birdie. Woods follows him in to match the birdie. The Americans remain two up.

Hole 5 - Woods plays a wonderful approach, taking it over the flag and the ball spinning back to five feet, holing the putt to take the Americans two up after five. The Americans are on the march.

Hole 4 - Woods, 127 yards to the hole plays a good shot to the heart of the green. Poulter is again in trouble, but plays an incredible recovery shot from thick rough, round a tree and over a bunker to pitch the ball right next to the hole but it just catches the slope and runs 15 feet away. Riley also hits close, to some 18 feet, but Clarke, from prime position finishes some 40 feet from the hole. A brave effort but it just misses on the right. Both Americans miss their par putts leaving Poulter with the chance to level the match but it too runs past the hole. The hole is halved and Europe remain one down.

Hole 3 - Woods finds sand on the par three to the left of the green and Poulter goes into the right bunker. Clarke finds the right side of the green. Riley also misses the green and both Americans fail to make par. Poulter's par putt from six feet lips out and Clarke also has a putt to win the hole from four feet and this time makes no mistake. The arrears are reduced to one hole.

Hole 2 - Woods chips out of thick rough on the par five second and controls it well to ten feet. Clarke plays a beautiful third, the ball checking eight feet past the flag. Riley chips from the back of the green and the putt is given. Clarke for the half, lips out and the US are two up after two. Great start by the US pairing.

Hole 1 - Ian Poulter hits his first drive in The Ryder Cup but pulls his shot well left. Darren Clarke also left in the rough and Chris Riley finds the bunker but Tiger Woods in the perfect position off the tee. Poulter hits his recovery into sand but Clarke finds the middle of the green. Woods still holds the advantage with an approach to 15 feet. Clarke putts up to three feet and Woods has the chance to win the hole. From a similar position to that which Haas holed from, Woods stroked his ball towards the hole but it just grazed the cup. But neither Clarke nor Poulter made par and America go one up. The US Team are making exactly the start they needed to get back into the Match.

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