MELBOURNE, Australia – With the tide quickly turning against Greg Norman’s International squad at the Presidents Cup, the Australian icon decided it was time for a change when he unveiled his lineup for the afternoon fourball session.
Ryo Ishikawa, who went winless over the first two days paired with Ernie Els, will sit Saturday afternoon along with Robert Allenby, who is also winless over three days.
“My message to the guys this afternoon, depending on the end result, if it just stays the way it is, they have to go out there and just play loose, play free,” said Norman, whose team trailed the Americans 9-5 with three matches still to play in the morning.
“They have got to make a move this afternoon. Tomorrow in the singles it will be a big move if you're down too many points.”
Sitting for the Americans in the afternoon will be Phil Mickelson and David Toms.
“(Mickelson) has played three straight and we want him really fresh for singles and he asked to sit if need be,” U.S. captain Fred Couples said. “Two people have to sit. He has an unbelievable record (7-4-5 in Presidents Cup four-ball play) but he’s (41).”
No surprise, the American leadoff tandem of Webb Simpson and Bubba Watson will go out first in the afternoon against Retief Goosen and Charl Schwartzel. The U.S. rookies are 3-0 this week and have not been pushed to the 18th hole in any match.
Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson will play again in the second match, taking on K.T. Kim and Y.E. Yang, who sat for the Internationals Saturday morning.
Steve Stricker and Matt Kuchar, who won their Friday fourball match, will play Geoff Ogilvy and K.J. Choi; followed by Hunter Mahan and Bill Haas vs. Aaron Baddeley and Jason Day, also fourball winners on Friday.
In the day’s final match Jim Furyk and Nick Watney will play Adam Scott and Ernie Els.
Watch wall-to-wall coverage of the Presidents Cup live on Golf Channel. Tournament air times: Golf Channel Friday 3PM-midnight and Saturday 6:30PM-12:30AM. NBC coverage Saturday at 8AM and Sunday at noon. (Note: all times are ET)