Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas concede a long putt to prevent Tyrrell Hatton getting an important read on the 18th

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How Spieth And Thomas Used The Rules To Their Advantage

Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas were not to be denied victory in their Ryder Cup match against Tyrrell Hatton and Paul Casey, using the Rules to their advantage in denying Europe a vital read on the final hole.

American Duo Concede Casey Putt

With the English duo fighting back from three down, Hatton arrived on the 18th green with a medium-range birdie putt that would have secured a huge half.

Hatton’s partner, Paul Casey, had laid up after finding the rough off the tee and his pitch left his ball on the same line as his partner. Spieth and Thomas were quick to spot that, by putting first, Casey would have been able to give a good read to his partner for the more important of the two putts. The Americans didn’t waste any time in giving Casey his putt.

It drew boos from the European fans, and Hatton followed the jeers with a putt well wide of the cup.

Watch: Hatton’s birdie putt drifts wide, which gives Spieth and Thomas a 1UP victory

However, the Americans were well aware of the ruling, and there’s no question that their decision to concede Casey’s lengthy putt was a wise move.

The Rule In Question

2-4. Concession of Match, Hole or Next Stroke

A player may concede a match at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that match.

A player may concede a hole at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that hole.

A player may concede his opponent’s next stroke at any time, provided the opponent’s ball is at rest. The opponent is considered to have holed out with his next stroke, and the ball may be removed by either side.

A concession may not be declined or withdrawn.

Elsewhere, only an inspired performance from Open champion Francesco Molinari and Tommy Fleetwood, against the much-fancied Tiger Woods and ‘Captain America’ Patrick Reed denied the Americans a clean sweep in the morning’s fourballs.

Fleetwood and Molinari came to life on the back nine, the Englishman holing a huge putt on the par-3 16th to open up a two-hole lead, which came on the back of another birdie on 15.

It was left to the Italian to drain a long putt on the 17th to wrap up an impressive 3&1 victory and give Team Europe something to build on going into the afternoon foursomes.