Stephen Gallagher claims Seve pairing win

Stephen Gallagher.  Picture:  Ian Rutherford
Stephen Gallagher. Picture: Ian Rutherford
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BATHGATE golfer Stephen Gallacher claimed Great Britain and Ireland’s only win as Continental Europe claimed a two-point lead after day one of the Seve Trophy.

Scottish pair Paul Lawrie and Gallacher beat veteran duo Miguel Angel Jimenez and Thomas Bjorn 3&2 to give Great Britain and Ireland an early lead at St Nom La Breteche.

But Europe were ahead in the other four fourballs as that match finished and went on to win three and halve the other to lead by 3½ points to 1½.

Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and Nicolas Colsaerts beat Marc Warren and Scott Jamieson 5&3, before Mikko Ilonen and Thorbjorn Olesen survived a nervy finish to defeat Tommy Fleetwood and Chris Wood on the 18th, ending Wood’s 
unbeaten record in the event.

Francesco Molinari birdied the last to ensure he and Matteo Manassero snatched a half against Paul Casey and Simon Khan, before Joost Luiten and Gregory Bourdy beat Jamie Donaldson and David Lynn 2&1.

Asked what pleased him the most about the day, Europe captain Jose Maria Olazabal said: “The way the youngsters played. Joost played extraordinarily well today and made a bunch of birdies. Thorbjorn also played very well.

“It was a great experience for them, but the main thing is to win points and I think the team is really happy today.”

GB&I captain Sam Torrance added: “They played very well. Our boys played very well too, but they made a few more birdies than us. Our turn tomorrow.”