Alex Fitzpatrick finishes on beaten team as United States charge at Walker Cup
Alex Fitzpatrick claimed the scalp of the world number one amateur but could not prevent Great Britain and Ireland from slumping to defeat in the Walker Cup.
GB&I carried a one point lead into the singles on the final day at Royal Liverpool but were swept aside by a ruthless United States team that powered to victory in eight of the final ten matches.
It included defeat for Sheffield golfer Fitzpatrick, who lost a ding dong battle with Isaiah Salinda which saw the lead change multiple times throughout 18 competitive holes.
Fitzpatrick was entrusted with leading from the front in each of the sessions of the four sessions of golf over two days at Hoylake. Each of the first three were closely contested but the fourth would prove disastrous for GB&I.
The Walker Cup has traditionally been won by the hosts, particularly when the US are forced to travel to play unfamiliar links golf.
But the visitors did not look unfazed at all by the challenge, despite strong wins on Merseyside.
The Saturday foursomes were split at two wins apiece, with Fitzpatrick partnering Conor Purcell to a 2&1 win over John Augenstein and Andy Ogletree.
The 20-year-old then excelled against world number one Cole Hammer. Finding himself two down after three holes, Fitzpatrick was up after seven.
From there, he was only down in the match once more and led from 14 onwards to take the win by two.
GB&I finished Saturday two points ahead but the US cut the deficit to one in the foursomes on Sunday morning.
That included a 2&1 defeat for Fitzpatrick and Purcell, despite never finding themselves behind to Brandon Wu and Alex Smalley until the 16th hole.
Fitzpatrick’s final match against Salinda went back and forth and it appeared he was on course for victory with six holes to play.
But Salinda fought back in front and held on to claim the win by two.
By then the leaderboard was a sea of red and the US team saw it through to claim an emphatic victory.