The Ryder Cup, the third most watched sporting event in the world, kicked off this morning and the European side jumped out to an early lead in three of the four matches. It looked like they would cruise to three early victories, however, the rain had other ideas, causing a delay of more than six hours at Celtic Manor golf course in Wales.
The tide turned in favor of the U.S. after the rain delay, as they now lead two matches and are all square in another. Play will resume tomorrow at 8 a.m. local time and 3 a.m. ET on Saturday morning. At the conclusion of a sloppy day one, here are the studs and duds of the day at the Ryder Cup.
Stewart Cink (USA)- The Americans were one down when play was halted because of the rain, but Stewart Cink quickly changed that. He made five birdies in the first 11 holes to turn that around quickly, giving the Americans a two up lead. Cink made captain Corey Pavin look like a genius for picking him.
Cink was partnered with Matt Kuchar today and the two showed Pavin why he paired them together in the first place. Cink will look to continue his stud performance when play resumes tomorrow.
Lee Westwood and Martin Kaymer (Europe)- The Europeans jumped out to an early lead in this match, as two of the hottest players in the world, Kaymer and Westwood, made quick work early in the day, going three up on Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson through six holes.
Mickelson and Johnson were able to cut the deficit to one down before darkness halted play, but it was still a very solid day for Kaymer and Westwood, who are looking like the strongest European pairing at the moment. Look for them to continue their solid play in the conclusion of the match.
Bubba Watson and Jeff Overton (USA)- The two rookies who everyone has criticized captain Corey Pavin for sending out in the early four ball matches made him look great, jumping out to a two up lead through two holes.The Europeans cut the deficit to one, but Overton and Watson are still in control of the match.
Rain- The rain was the most dominant force in the play today, suspending play for over six hours. The rain does not show any sign of letting up this week.
The United States Rain Gear- The Americans did not come correctly prepared for the rain, as their rain gear did not work properly. The rain gear ordered by U.S. captain Pavin was made by Sun Mountain. They had to go and purchase new rain gear from the merchandise shop that had the European Ryder Cup logo on it with no special markings for the U.S. team. This was an embarrassing for Team USA.
Celtic Manor Golf Course- The Celtic Manor Golf Course has a complex drainage system that is supposed to drain water from the course quickly. It is, however, difficult to drain the golf course if it is pouring rain. The course that was specifically designed for the Ryder Cup was unable to see much action today because of the rain, and that is a shame.
Phil Mickelson (USA)- Mickelson has the honor of playing on the only U.S. team that is trailing. He was all over the course all morning, countless times finding water hazards or sand traps. He finally got the ball rolling late in the day, but the fact that they are the only U.S. pairing losing keeps him on the dud list. Look for him to rebound tomorrow in a big way
The U.S. Outfits- Who picked those outfits? What are they wearing?
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Paul Ferguson is an intern at bleacher report.
Follow him on twitter at: @paulwall5