GB&I extends its PGA Cup lead over US during Saturday four-ball matches

By Bob Denney
Published on
GB&I extends its PGA Cup lead over US during Saturday four-ball matches

OTTERSHAW, Surrey, England (Sept. 16, 2017) – Defending Champion Great Britain & Ireland jumped out to a quick start in four-balls, winning three of the Saturday morning matches, to build a 7½ to 4½ lead in the 28th PGA Cup.

The premier international competition for PGA Club Professionals continues with a quartet of Saturday foursomes and concludes Sunday with 10 singles matches. The United States is 17-6-4 overall since the PGA Cup began in 1973.

The United States is 6-5-1 on the road, and last won the Cup outright in the United Kingdom in 2009, with a 17½ - 8½ victory in Scotland. The Americans forged a 13-13 draw in 2013 in Hexham, England; and were defeated in 2015 at CordeValle in San Martin, California, 13½ - 12½, for the first loss on U.S. soil.

MORE: Full coverage from the PGA Cup Scores and schedule | Day 2 photos

Saturday Morning Summaries - Morning Four-Balls

Christopher Currie & David Higgins (GB&I) def. Rod Perry & Jamie Broce (USA), 4 and 3

Ireland’s David Higgins, the 2016 PGA Professional Champion, teamed with Scottish partner
Christopher Currie, runner-up in the Titleist & FootJoy PGA Professional Championship, for six birdies through 12 holes. It was more than enough momentum to register the first point on the board in the Morning Four-Balls. Rod Perry’s birdie at No. 5 was the lone U.S. winning hole.

Rich Berberian Jr. & Adam Rainaud (USA) def. Matthew Cort & Garry Houston (GBI), 5 and 3

Two of the most evenly-matched duos producing a match that was all square through six holes, including matching deuces on the 179-yard, par-3 sixth. Rich Berberian Jr., won the first hole among the foursome with a birdie on the 548-yard, par-5 seventh hole. Adam Rainaud answered with a birdie at No. 8 to give the Americans a 2-up lead. Berberian then uncorked the highlight shot of the first two days, driving the 324-yard 10th hole and rolling home a 10-foot eagle putt for a 3-up lead. The Americans closed out GB&I, with birdies by Berberian at No. 13 and Rainaud at 15.

Chris McDonnell & Damien McGrane (GB&I) def. Matt Dobyns & Mark Brown (USA), 2 and 1

Former Irish PGA Champion Damien McGrane led with birdies on the second and fifth holes to keep he and England’s Chris McDonnell in front through six holes. Matt Dobyns birdied the par-3 fourth hole and Mark Brown posted his first birdie of the day at the par-5 seventh to square the match. McGrane answered with a birdie at the ninth for a 1-up lead. GB&I improved to a 2-up lead after a McGrane birdie at the 12th, and Dobyns trimmed the deficit to one hole with a birdie at 14. GB&I closed out the match as McDonnell rifled an approach to three feet on the 17th hole for an easy birdie.

Robert Coles & Greig Hutcheon (GB&I) def. Josh Speight & Dave McNabb (USA), 2 and 1

Robert Coles, who was the 2014 European Four-Balls Champion, and Scotland’s Greig Hutcheon, sped to a 2-up advantage through four holes, while Dave McNabb and Josh Speight struggled early, including a McNabb bogey on the par-4 third hole. Speight brought the U.S. duo back within a hole deficit with a deuce on the par-3 sixth hole. GB&I pushed the margin to 4 up with birdies by three straight birdies by Coles on Holes 10-12. Speight answered with an eagle on the 14th hole and McNabb birdied the 16th to send the match to 17. Coles closed out the match by making a 20-foot birdie putt from the front fringe.

Great Britain & Ireland 3 United States 1

Mid-Day 2 Total: Great Britain & Ireland 7½ United States 4½

Saturday Afternoon Foursomes Pairings
1:15 p.m. Paul Claxton, Claxton, Ga. & Jamie Broce, Indianapolis (USA) vs. Matthew Cort, Leicester, Leicestershire, England & Garry Houston, Wrexham, Wales (GB&I)

1:30 p.m. Adam Rainaud, Chester, Conn. & Rich Berberian Jr., Hooksett, N.H. (USA) vs. Robert Coles, Romford, Essex, England & Andrew Raitt, London, England (GB&I)

1:45 p.m. Rod Perry, Port Orange, Fla. & Josh Speight, Locust Hill, Va. (USA) vs. Phillip Archer, Warrington, Cheshire, England & Christopher Currie, Clydebank, Dunbartonshire, Scotland (GB&I)

2:00 p.m. Matt Dobyns, Glen Head, N.Y. & Omar Uresti, Austin, Texas (USA) vs. David Higgins, Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland & Damien McGrane, Kells, County Meath, Ireland (GB&I)