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Analyzing Friday's four-ball matches

10/9/2009 - Golf

SAN FRANCISCO -- There is a major difference in putting together pairings for the two Presidents Cup team formats.

In foursomes -- or alternate shot -- a captain will try to pair like-minded players so neither is forced to play shots from out of his comfort zone. In four-ball -- or best-ball -- it's essential to team players with opposite styles; ideally, a captain would like to have a steady, fairways-and-greens type of performer with a birdie-buster who can take dead aim at the flagsticks.

In setting their lineups for Friday's four-ball matches, U.S. captain Fred Couples and International team skipper Greg Norman took these guidelines to heart, pairing dissimilar styles of players whenever possible.

How will the strategy play out? Let's break down each of the six matches: