Golf

Profitable SA duo face prime seeds on Day 2 at Match Play

Cape City – South African duo Branden Grace and Justin Harding gained their opening group matches on the World Golf Championships-Match Play.

Grace prevailed over Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama four&three and can face world No 1 Dustin Johnson on Day 2 on the Austin Nation Membership.

“It will be a troublesome match … It will be good,” Grace advised the PGA Tour web site.

“If I preserve doing the identical issues that I’ve completed in the present day, ball-striking was a giant key … I am going to head to the placing inexperienced. I missed one or two little brief ones. So if I can get that below management, I will be there.”

The in-form Harding took down Englishman Matthew Fitzpatrick 1-up. Nevertheless, the South African could have his work lower out for him when he battles world No four Rory McIlroy on Thursday.

“I’ll have to enhance a bit of bit to take him on,” Harding advised the PGA Tour.

“Rory’s been taking part in nice over the past couple of weeks. It is going to be a pleasant alternative for me to see the way it’s completed contained in the ropes, and perhaps study a bit of bit as effectively, and provides the boy a bit of little bit of a problem.”

In the meantime, SA’s prime ranked golfer Louis Oosthuizen misplaced three&2 to American Kyle Stanley.

Oosthuizen will probably be determined for a win on Thursday when he takes on South Korean Byeong Hun An because it’s inconceivable to advance out of the group stage with two defeats.

Outcomes from Wednesday’s opening matches of the WGC Match-Play Championship at Austin (Texas) Nation Membership (Group winners advance to knockout stage):

Group 1

Dustin Johnson (USA x1) bt Chez Reavie (USA x55) four&three

Branden Grace (RSA x40) bt Hideki Matsuyama (JPN x24) four&three

Group 2

Justin Rose (ENG x2) bt Emiliano Grillo (ARG x53) 2&1

Gary Woodland (USA x22) bt Eddie Pepperell (ENG x34) 2&1

Group three

Brooks Koepka (USA x3) and Tom Lewis (ENG x60) halved

Li Haotong (CHN x36) bt Alex Noren (SWE x27) 5&four

Group four

Rory McIlroy (NIR x4) bt Luke Checklist (USA x64) 5&four

Justin Harding (RSA x47) bt Matthew Fitzpatrick (ENG x32) 1-up

Group 5

Lucas Bjerregaard (DEN x50) bt Justin Thomas (USA x5) three&2

Matt Wallace (ENG x33) bt Keegan Bradley (USA x31) 1-up

Group 6

Bryson DeChambeau (USA x6) bt Russell Knox (SCO x59) three&1

Marc Leishman (USA x17) bt Kiradech Aphibarnrat (THA x39) 2-up

Group 7

Francesco Molinari (ITA x7) bt Satoshi Kodaira (JPN x63) 5&four

Thorbjorn Olesen (DEN x45) bt Webb Simpson (USA x21) 2&1

Group eight

Jon Rahm (ESP x8) bt Ki Si-woo (KOR x54) 7&5

Matt Kuchar (USA x23) bt JB Holmes (USA x43) three&1

Group 9

Xander Schauffele (USA x9) bt Lee Westwood (ENG x62) 1-up

Tyrrell Hatton (ENG x35) bt Rafa Cabrera Bello (ESP x29) four&three

Group 10

Paul Casey (ENG x10) bt Abraham Ancer (MEX x58) 5&three

Charles Howell (USA x42) bt Cameron Smith (AUS x25) 2&1

Group 11

Tommy Fleetwood (ENG x11) bt An Byeong-hun (KOR x49) three&2

Kyle Stanley (USA x41) bt Louis Oosthuizen (RSA x19) three&2

Group 12

Jim Furyk (USA x52) bt Jason Day (AUS x12) 2-up

Henrik Stenson (SWE x37) bt Phil Mickelson (USA x20) 2&1

Group 13

Tiger Woods (USA x13) bt Aaron Sensible (USA x61) three&1

Patrick Cantlay (USA x18) and Brandt Snedeker (USA x44) halved

Group 14

Tony Finau (USA x14) bt Keith Mitchell (USA x56) 2&1

Ian Poulter (ENG x30) bt Kevin Kisner (USA x48) 2-up

Group 15

Kevin Na (USA x57) bt Bubba Watson (USA x15) 1-up

Jordan Spieth (USA x28) and Billy Horschel (USA x38) halved

Group 16

Andrew Putnam (USA x51) bt Patrick Reed (USA x16) three&2

Sergio Garcia (ESP x26) bt Shane Lowry (IRL x46) four&2

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