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2016 Ryder Cup Day 2: Europe trail the United States by three-points

The United States came back to win the last three afternoon fourball matches.

Ryder Cup
Rory McIlory during the afternoon fourballs on Day 2

The United States lead Europe 9½-6½ as they go into the final day of the Ryder Cup with a three-point advantage. The scores were briefly tied after the first afternoon fourballs, but the Americans regained their lead in the later matches.

Darren Clarke's side was whitewashed in Friday's opening session but they hit back to win three of the afternoon fourballs on the first day of the Ryder Cup. The second day witnessed the Americans maintaining their momentum to win two and a half points from the morning foursomes.

Rory McIlroy paired up with potential long-term partner Thomas Pieters to win the first of the afternoon fourballs. However, Europe suffered a setback in their bid for a fourth successive Ryder Cup win.

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In a hostile Hazeltine, McIlroy called for a foul-mouthed fan to be ejected from the course. Pieters, who is certainly living up to Clarke's assertion of him as the future world number one, combined with McIlroy for nine birdies and an eagle as they defeated Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka to level the match score.

However, the decision to split the Spanish pairing up of Sergio Garcia and Rafa Cabrera Bello did not work as Danny Willett and Lee Westwood could not win. An in-form Patrick Reed and Jordan Spieth won 1&2 over the top pairing of Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose.

Willet and Westwood both made bogeys on the short 17th when it was all square with two to play. However, Westwood missed a birdie on the last hole from two feet and escaped with half a point. Westwood's miss would have cut the deficit from three to two points.

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Reed provided encouragement to the home fans whereas McIlroy was the man to lead European cheers. Kaymer managed only two birdies in the fourballs alongside Garcia after Garcia and Carbrera Bello had recovered against Spieth and Reed from four down with six to play. Kaymer and Garcia went down 2&1 to Phil Mickelson and Matt Kuchar.

This left the United States leading by three points as they head into Sunday's 12 singles matches. Europe would definitely draw confidence from their victory at Medinah in 2012 when they overturned a four-point deficit on the final day inspired by Ian Poulter. 

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