Ryder Cup 2012: Complete Pairings for Sunday's Matchups

Richard LangfordCorrespondent ISeptember 29, 2012

MEDINAH, IL - SEPTEMBER 29:  Keegan Bradley of the USA celebrates on the 17th hole during day two of the Afternoon Four-Ball Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 29, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Europe is going to need an amazing day of single matches on Sunday if they want to defend their Ryder Cup title against the Americans. 

After an impressive first two days of foursome and four-ball play, the U.S. has a commanding 10-6 lead, but don't expect the Americans to be celebrating yet. 

They know that lead is not insurmountable. In the famed 1999 Ryder Cup at Brookline, the Americans entered Sunday trailing by that same 10-6 margin. They went on to win 14.5 to 13.5. 

On that day, Justin Leonard, from 45' away, drained his putt on No. 17. When the putt went down, the American team and their significant others, who were watching green-side, stormed onto the green. And they did so despite the fact that Jose Maria Olazabal still had a putt that could have tied the hole.

That moment is a big reason why the Ryder Cup has evolved into one of the biggest events in golf, and you better believe Olazabal, who is the European captain this year, would love to turn the tables on the Americans. 

To do that, they are going to have to earn 8.5 out of a possible 12 points from the following singles matches. 


Complete Pairings

The Ryder Cup tweeted out the pairings. 

Sunday's #RyderCup SIngles Pairings -----> twitter.com/rydercup/statu…

— Ryder Cup (@rydercup) September 30, 2012


Key Matches

Bubba Watson vs. Luke Donald

This match will begin the day's play, and that makes it vital for the Europeans. They are facing a huge deficit and they need to get off to a strong start. 

If Donald comes out and falls behind right off the bat, it is going to present a big mental barrier. This team already has their work cut out for them, they don't need anything making their task seem even more overwhelming. 

They will have a good chance to steal a point here. Donald is a fantastic match player, and Bubba has been inconsistent so far. 


Keegan Bradley vs. Rory McIlroy

Keegan Bradley has been on fire at this Ryder Cup. It will be fun to see if he can maintain that high level of play without his partner Phil Mickelson at his side and while going against the world's No. 1 in McIlroy. 

Bradley has looked sharper than McIlroy thus far, but we all know that Rory can catch fire in an instant, and when he does, there is no one that is going to beat him. 

If Keegan can keep his hot hand going and beat the Europeans' best player, it is hard to envision them completing the comeback. 


Tiger Woods vs. Francesco Molinari

This match may prove to be moot. It is the final pairing of the day, and this competition could be decided long before these guys wrap up. 

However, if the Europeans do mount a comeback, this match will take front and center. 

Tiger is 0-3 at this year's event, but he has historically performed much better in singles matches at the Ryder Cup.