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Thomas outduels McIlroy as US hit back at Ryder Cup

Justin Thomas defeated Rory McIlroy 1-up in the opening singles match at the Ryder Cup on Sunday as the United States cut Europe's lead to one point -- 10.5 to 9.5.

Justin Thomas outlasted Rory McIlroy in the opening match in Sunday's Ryder Cup singles
Justin Thomas outlasted Rory McIlroy in the opening match in Sunday's Ryder Cup singles (AFP)

Justin Thomas defeated Rory McIlroy 1-up in the opening singles match at the Ryder Cup on Sunday as the United States cut Europe's lead to one point -- 10.5 to 9.5.

A calamitous 18th hole for McIlroy saw the Northern Irishman find the bunker with his tee shot, as well as the water, as Thomas picked up his fourth point of the competition.

"Hopefully they'll look up there and see I got that point. You can feel it out here, just the American roars are a lot different, for a good reason, and I'm hoping to hear some more," said Thomas.

Paul Casey and Brooks Koepka halved the second match, while Webb Simpson beat Justin Rose 3 and 2 after carding six birdies to put away the Olympic champion on the Albatros course.

Tony Finau romped to a 6 and 4 win over fellow rookie Tommy Fleetwood, denying the Englishman the chance to become the first European to win five points from a possible five at the Ryder Cup.