Ryder Cup 2016: Rory McIlroy looking to build on momentum as Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson are split up

Darren Clarke is looking to avoid another whitewash in the foursomes

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Europe's go-to golfer Rory McIlroy aims to carry on where he left off as he leads the bid to reel in the United States' advantage on day two of the Ryder Cup at Hazeltine.

The Northern Irishman produced a brilliant finish to Friday's fourballs, hitting a superb 226-yard four iron to 20 feet and then holing his eagle putt before wildly celebrating a crucial 3&2 win over Dustin Johnson and Matt Kuchar, who had won the previous two holes to set up a tense finish.

That point by McIlroy, and his impressive rookie partner Thomas Pieters, ensured Europe finished the day on a high even though they trailed 5-3 as the picture looked a lot rosier than after a 4-0 foursomes thrashing.

Captain Darren Clarke has switched both his pairings and the order for Saturday's foursomes in the hope of avoiding another whitewash.

"It is definitely something we need to address if we can," said McIlroy, who will go out first with Pieters again against Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler.

"If we want to ride this little wave of momentum that we have we obviously need to address it.

"We're not going down without a fight. It was four-zip after the morning. We've pulled it back a good bit and we plan to pull it back even further."

Clarke has split up his successful pairing of Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson as he needs the pair to accompany Matt Fitzpatrick and Chris Wood, making their debuts after sitting out Friday, respectively.

Stenson and Fitzpatrick take on Brandt Snedeker and Brooks Koepka, while Rose and Wood face Jimmy Walker and Zach Johnson with Spanish duo Sergio Garcia and Rafa Cabrera Bello in match four against America's top pair Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed.

McIlroy and Pieters' victory capped an important afternoon fightback, begun by Rose and Stenson who beat Spieth and Reed 5&4 to avenge their 3&2 morning foursomes defeat.

The two Spaniards, with Cabrera Bello making his Ryder Cup debut, were equally good in beating JB Holmes and Ryan Moore 3&2.

However, Martin Kaymer and Danny Willett, another rookie, struggled all afternoon and lost 5&4 to Snedeker and Koepka.

Nevertheless, Clarke was a happy man at the end of the day.

"I would definitely say it's better to have a small deficit with some momentum because we didn't have much at lunchtime," he said.

"The guys went back out there and they showed just why I'm so proud of them.

"They showed a massive amount of desire and the fight in them to get themselves right back into it again."

The morning had seen a red USA wave wash over the scoreboard as Mickelson and Fowler beat McIlroy and Andy Sullivan one up, Walker and Zach Johnson defeat Garcia and Kaymer 4&2 and Dustin Johnson and Kuchar sweep aside Lee Westwood and Pieters 5&4.

"Obviously I'm happy to be 5-3," said US captain Davis Love.

"I like being ahead but I keep telling our guys there's eight points a day and then there's 12 points on Sunday.

"Even after two days, the Sunday is very important."

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