Olazabal gives early clues

  • Last Updated: September 25 2012, 14:01 BST

European captain Jose Maria Olazabal revealed his first hand when Ryder Cup practice began in Chicago on Tuesday - and Luke Donald was not playing alongside Sergio Garcia.

McIlroy and McDowell: Expected to play together

The pair have won all four foursomes together in the match, but two years ago Donald teamed up with Lee Westwood and they thrashed top American pair Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker 6&5 at Celtic Manor.

Donald and Westwood were sent out with Ian Poulter and Justin Rose - partners in Louisville in 2008 - in the opening group, while Garcia was with Paul Lawrie, Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell.

World number one McIlroy and 2010 match-winner McDowell played all three games together in Wales and are firmly expected to start together on Friday.

Lawrie, playing in the event for the first time since 1999, will be delighted if Garcia does become his partner, although there was still plenty of time for Olazabal to switch things around.

Garcia won on the PGA Tour only last month, a week before the Scot won the Johnnie Walker Championship on home soil at Gleneagles.

The third grouping brought together the other four continentals in Olazabal's side - Martin Kaymer, Francesco Molinari, Peter Hanson and lone debutant Nicolas Colsaerts, the first Belgian to play in the Ryder Cup.

Europe were first onto the course, gathering at 7am first of all for team photographs. They wore orange shirts and jumpers with blue trousers, while their golf bags had an image of the late Seve Ballesteros imprinted.

Europe practice groups: Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood, Luke Donald, Justin Rose; Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy, Peter Lawrie, Sergio Garcia; Martin Kaymer, Nicolas Colsaerts, Francesco Molinari, Peter Hanson.

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