Bjorn eyes EurAsia victory with Ryder Cup in mind

Tommy Fleetwood and Paul Casey talk during day one's fourballs at the Eur Asia Cup in Malaysia

Tommy Fleetwood and Paul Casey got Europe off to a strong start before Asia hit back to lead on day one

Race to Dubai victor Tommy Fleetwood and Henrik Stenson put Europe on the board as they tied the overall score Saturday by handing the visitors a 3 and 2 win over Indian pairing Anirban Lahiri and S.S.P Chawrasia.

Phachara Khongwatmai and Hideto Tanihara, Asua, def. Paul Dunne and Alex Noren, Europe, 2 and 1.

It is the first time Asia heads into tomorrow's singles with a lead, which while being slender is a massive mental boost for them.

Europe trailed 3½-2½ after day one, but took the lead by winning three of the first four foursomes matches on the second day in Malaysia, at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club.

"I've been talking to the guys all week that (we should) expect them to come out firing", European captain Bjorn said.

"It was a really good morning, we played really solid", added Fleetwood. "We have got to go out and put some blue on the board and try to win the singles".

"We are looking forward to the challenge ahead, but we are in a position where we feel like we knew we could find ourselves in, and we knew this Asian team is very strong and very much ready to play".

An ecstatic Arjun Atwal, Asia's captain said, "I have said from the beginning that this team is capable of winning and I have believed in them".

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"Putting wins matches. If you make putts, you're going to win matches".

Bjorn is also Europe's Ryder Cup captain, and the tournament is a chance for him to test players in a team environment before the showdown against the US in Paris.

Atwal believes Team Asia can lift the trophy: "I absolutely believe that otherwise I wouldn't be here".

"I'm slightly disappointed with the outcome today but I'm sure we can rise to what's ahead of us tomorrow".

With Asia holding the lead on a day of constant drizzle, Li Haotong earned the biggest cheer for the men in red after he birdied the final hole of the final fourball match for he and Nicholas Fung to force a draw against Europe's Bernd Wiesberger and Rafa Cabrera Bello.

Yuta Ikeda and Gavin Green beat Thomas Pieters and Matthew Fitzpatrick 2&1 before Henrik Stenson and rookie Alex Levy fell to Sunghoon Kang and Poom Saksansin 5&4.

Europe, who started the day trailing in four of the six matches, managed to calm proceedings and turn things around by eventually finishing the day trailing by just one point.

Le Golf National in Paris will host the 42nd Ryder Cup in September when the Dane will lead a side trying to wrest the title back from the United States, who last won in Europe 25 years ago.

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