WATCH: Rory McIlroy loses match to Justin Thomas on 18 after poor drive, brutal break

September 30, 2018

SAINT-QUENTIN-EN-YVELINES, France — The first match of Ryder Cup Sunday Singles was the perfect table setter. Justin Thomas vs Rory McIlroy.

Seventeen holes in, the showdown had fully lived up to the billing. Thomas and McIlroy walked to the 18th tee all square, thanks to an impressive up and down from McIlroy at 17. Thomas crushed his tee shot down the skinniest part of the water-lined fairway. In McIlroy’s chance to answer, he pushed his 3-wood just a touch, sending it soaring toward the fairway bunker. That’s where he got unlucky.

Rory’s ball plugged straight into the lip of the bunker, leaving him no shot at reaching the green. As Thomas waited in the fairway, McIlroy was forced to hack at the ball, unable to advance it in the direction of the hole.

McIlroy then tried his luck with a long iron, needing to reach the green to apply any kind of pressure on Thomas. It skipped from the bunker, rolled into the water, all but ensuring a point for his opponent. Thomas stuck his approach inside 15 feet, and the match was over.