Ryder Cup teams announce pairings for Friday morning matches

Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson to face Justin Rose, Henrik Stenson in Friday's fourball session of Ryder Cup

The captains of the U.S. and European teams announced Thursday their initial pairings for the 2014 Ryder Cup.

The fourball sessions Friday morning will begin with Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson facing Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson.

The second match will pit Rickie Fowler and Jimmy Walker against Thomas Bjorn and Martin Kaymer. The third match will feature Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed against Stephen Gallacher and Ian Poulter.

The final match could be the highlight of the morning, with Keegan Bradley and Phil Mickelson versus Sergio Garcia and the world's No. 1-ranked player, Rory McIlroy.

"You look at some scenarios that could be special for the opening matches," U.S. captain Tom Watson said.

On Ryder Cup rookies Spieth, 21, and Reed, 24, playing together on the first morning, Watson added: "They've been playing some practice rounds together. I told them today, I'm going to throw you in the ocean without a life preserver."

Said European captain Paul McGinley: "I see a lot of experience at the top and bottom and three rookies in the middle two groups. [The U.S. has] a very similar mind-set to ours in terms of world rankings."

The fourball, or better-ball, matches, will be followed by foursomes, or alternate shot. Those pairings will be announced later.

Follow David Wharton on Twitter @LATimesWharton

Copyright © 2019, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad