Ryder Cup 2023 LIVE: Day 2 scores and updates as McIlroy-Fleetwood and Spieth-Thomas start foursomes

USA affected by illness, says Zach Johnson

American captain Zach Johnson said illness may have affected his players after Team USA failed to register a single win in the opening eight matches for the first time in Ryder Cup history.

Europe swept to an historic 4-0 lead in the morning foursomes, before claiming another win and three ties in the afternoon fourballs to hold a 6½ – 1½ advantage overnight.

“We’ve got some congestion and some signs [of illness],” Johnson said. “Things like that are unfortunate, sometimes the energy is a little low. But the ability and desire to go out and play is still there. Every one of them wants to play every match.”

Zach Johnson speaks to the media after day one in Rome

Hovland, Aberg and the Scandi bromance at the beating heart of Europe’s Ryder Cup

A closer look at Europe’s Scandinavian pairing in match two:

“Golf is easy when you’re playing with The Stud,” said Viktor Hovland at the end of his morning foursomes match, glancing up admiringly at his teammate. The Stud is Ludvig Aberg, the 23-year-old Swedish Ryder Cup rookie tipped to be the sport’s next big thing. He is tall and slender, with chiseled features, sunken eyes and a disarming smile. And Hovland is right: he makes golf seem easy.

Aberg has been a professional for only four months and has not yet played a major. He didn’t even make the top-four most recognisable faces in their foursomes match against America’s Max Homa and Brian Harman, with Novak Djokovic trailing them around Marco Simone Golf Club. But after an edgy start – “I was very nervous,” Aberg later admitted, and his legs turned to jelly “multiple times” – he soon settled into his Ryder Cup debut.

Full story:

The Scandinavian bromance at the beating heart of Europe’s Ryder Cup

Superstar rookie Ludvig Aberg teamed up with world No 4 Viktor Hovland to make a harmonious pairing which could serve Team Europe well again on Saturday, and for many Ryder Cups to come

Ryder Cup 2023 – day two

The fans have just been let into the grounds here at Marco Simone Golf Club, and there is plenty of noise being made already as McIlroy and Fleetwood work on the driving range in front of a packed stand of fans. Less than half an hour until it gets back under way…

Justin Rose buoyant after crucial late point

“It was the last putt of the day, the whole team around. Bobby [MacIntyre] and I worked so hard all day to get something out of that.

“You look at the significance of the scoreboard and just the fact there was no red on the scoreboard the whole day long. Bob and I did not want it to be us today and I felt we deserved more than that.

“We did play well. Wyndham [Clark] and Max [Homa] tag-teamed nicely and were a hard team to beat. We had to work for it. It gives us huge momentum this afternoon on what could have been a huge claw-back for USA.”

Rose celebrates after making his putt on 18

Justin Thomas after USA’s disappointment on Friday

“It’s not the start we wanted but fortunately for us, we’ve got a lot of golf left. We’ll just go get some sleep, regroup and try to win as many points as possible tomorrow.

“Tomorrow is important. We’ve put ourselves in a spot where every session is extremely important and yeah, at the end of the day, it’s just all anybody can do is control their match.

“You can’t win more than one point in one match, and just go out and do your job and win as many as we possibly can tomorrow and get back in it going into singles.”

Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas will pair up again this morning

Ryder Cup 2023

The first match of the day is a mouthwatering one: Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth are charged with firing up USA’s day two, and they take on European pair Rory McIlroy and Tommy Fleetwood. The ‘Fleetwood Mac’ duo got over the line, just, against Xander Schauffele and Patrick Cantlay yesterday morning and this will be a key match that sets the tone early in the day.

Here’s a closer look at Justin Thomas, who justified his controversial selection in the afternoon fourballs:

Justin Thomas produces iconic moment to validate Ryder Cup selection

The two-time major winner delivered a gutsy display to validate his Team USA selection as a wildcard for the Ryder Cup

Ryder Cup 2023

However, all was not well in the American camp, as Brooks Koepka hit out at Jon Rahm and labelled his Ryder Cup rival a “child” for his behaviour on the course.

The five-time major winner was left frustrated after Team USA squandered a lead twice in the closing holes of their fourball match against Rahm and rookie Nicolai Hojgaard. Rahm chipped in for eagle on the 16th to square the match and then made another eagle on the 18th after bumping a putt off the backboard before the ball bounced up and nestled into the hole.

“I mean, I think me and Scottie birdied, what did we say, 14, we birdied 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and then lost by two,” Koepka said after the tied match. “So yeah. I mean, I want to hit a board and pout just like Jon Rahm did. But, you know, it is what it is. Act like a child. But we’re adults. We move on.”

Brooks Koepka hits out at Jon Rahm as tensions boil over at Ryder Cup

The American hit out at the Spaniard following their halved fourball match at Marco Simone

Ryder Cup 2023

The European players thoroughly enjoyed the scenes on the 18th green on Friday.

They had whitewashed America 4-0 in the morning’s foursomes, and as the sun began to set at Marco Simone Golf Club, the 18th green became the setting for late drama in the afternoon’s fourballs. Victor Hovland, Jon Rahm and Justin Rose all made crucial putts at the last to turn defeats into ties and ensure the US did not win a single match on day one – the first time that has ever happened at the Ryder Cup.

“The 18th hole was incredibly kind to us,” said Rose, after he locked in Europe’s 6½-1½ overnight lead, and celebrated wildly with his teammates watching on. “The boys made some incredible putts. Those three ties mean a lot.”

Full story:

Europe relish 18th hole drama after crushing America on day one of Ryder Cup

Justin Rose sank the final putt of a thrilling afternoon’s fourballs to cement Europe’s historic lead over America after day one in Rome

Ryder Cup 2023 – day two tee times

It was no surprise when Luke Donald threw out the same four pairings for this morning’s foursomes that clean-swept yesterday morning’s foursomes.

Zach Johnson meanwhile shuffles his pack a little, bringing in Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth right from the start to face Europe’s Fleetwood Mac duo, and backing them up with the heavyweight combination that is Scottie Scheffler and Brooks Koepka.

Here is how the morning will shape up (times BST):

6:35am Foursomes match 1: Tommy Fleetwood and Rory McIlroy vs Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth

6:50am Foursomes match 2: Viktor Hovland and Ludvig Aberg vs Scottie Scheffler and Brooks Koepka

7:05am Foursomes match 3: Shane Lowry and Sepp Straka vs Max Homa and Brian Harman

7:20am Foursomes match 4: Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton vs Xander Schauffele and Patrick Cantlay

Ryder Cup 2023

Follow all the latest updates from day two at the Ryder Cup as Europe look to build on their commanding five-point overnight lead.

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