- Ferguson defeats world No.2 McNealy
- GB&I maintain two point lead over USA
- Everything to play for on final day
Ewen Ferguson enjoyed a dream Walker Cup debut as he defeated Maverick McNealy on the last hole to claim what could prove to be a vital point for GB&I.
Ferguson led from the second hole of the round but a spirited performance from McNealy meant he couldn’t put the game to bed before coming through a nail-biting finale.
“Maverick is such a great player,” Ferguson exclusively told bunkered.co.uk after closing out the win. “He never away any holes out there, I had to go out and win them. That’s why he’s the player that he is.
“It’s just so cool to play in the Walker Cup and to come down the stretch with a 1UP lead down a last hole like Lytham, it just doesn’t get much better.
“I felt ok coming down the stretch even though I only had a small lead. I was probably more nervous on the 18th tee than I was on the first, but I managed to put my drive straight down the middle. Holing that putt on the last, the reaction from everyone was brilliant. It’s a moment I’ll remember for a long time.”
"A couple of years ago my anger would have gotten the better of me" - Ewen Ferguson
McNealy, who is ranked No.2 on the World Amateur Golf Ranking, fell behind early on with a double bogey on the second hole and Ferguson piled on more pressure, going three-up through seven holes. It was then that McNealy mounted a comeback, winning the eighth and ninth holes to reach the turn 1DN.
An up-and-down back-nine, was lit up by Ferguson on the 16th hole. Measuring 336 yards, McNealy had already knocked an iron down the middle of the fairway on the par-4 when Ferguson stepped up and smashed a driver to six feet from the pin.
“I was pretty angry standing on that tee,” admitted Ferguson. “I didn’t play the 15th hole well at all and I just used my anger to my advantage. A couple of years ago my anger would have gotten the better of me, but I managed to use it to hit a great shot instead of an awful one.”
That put him 2UP dormie and, although he lost the 17th, he was able to close out the match on 18th, which was halved in pars.
Elsewhere in the afternoon singles, Grant Forrest didn’t enjoy a good start to Walker Cup life, losing 2&1 to 37-year-old American Scott Harvey. US Amateur champion Bryson DeChambeau halved his match with England’s Ashley Chesters with a miraculous four on the last, while Paul Dunne, who impressed at this year’s Open Championship, suffered his second defeat of the day, losing by two holes to Hunter Stewart.
Foursomes hero Jimmy Mullen continued his great form beating Denny McCarthy by two holes, while Irishman Gary Hurley recovered from 3DN through seven holes to get a half point from Robby Shelton. Jack Hume dominated big-hitting Beau Hossler much of the match, but it was Hossler who triumphed by one hole. Meanwhile, Gavin Moynihan, who is playing in his second Walker Cup, enjoyed a resounding 4&2 victory against Jordan Niebrugge.
Those results mean GB&I head into the second, and final, day of matches with a 7-5 lead over the USA.
Chesters halved with DeChambeau
Dunne lost to Stewart (2 holes)
Forrest lost to Harvey (2&1)
Mullen beat McCarthy (3&2)
Ferguson beat McNealy (1 hole)
Hurley halved with Shelton
Hume lost to Hossler (1 hole)
Moynihan beat Niebrugge (4&2)
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