Despite run, Stenson's back has him on the bench


GLENEAGLES, Scotland – Henrik Stenson’s lower back stiffened up before Saturday’s morning fourballs, and despite his brilliant form, European captain Paul McGinley decided to bench Stenson for the afternoon foursomes to rest him for Sunday.

Stenson and Justin Rose are 3-0. They teamed to go 12 under, a Ryder Cup fourballs record, in their 3-and-2 victory against Bubba Watson and Matt Kuchar. Stenson and Rose made 10 consecutive birdies in that match.

McGinley said he checked with Stenson right before it was time to submit his foursomes pairings.

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“Of course, I wanted to keep that pairing together,” McGinley said. “I checked with Henrik, and his back was loosening up, but I made that decision.”

As he was leaving the media center Saturday, Stenson said a long season has been hard on his back, neck and wrist, and he didn’t have a problem with McGinley giving him an afternoon of rest before Sunday singles.

“I'll be fine to play tomorrow,” Stenson said. “It was a bit stiff this morning. It was a long day yesterday and that kind of took its toll.”