Magical Moynihan and McElroy fire Europe into Bonallack lead
 Gavin Moynihan salutes his supporters during last year's Irish Open at Carton House. Picture: Thos Caffrey /  www.golffile.ie

Gavin Moynihan salutes his supporters during last year's Irish Open at Carton House. Picture: Thos Caffrey / www.golffile.ie

The Island's Gavin Moynihan was highly impressive as he teamed up with Ballymena's Dermot McElroy to win both their matches as holders Europe built a 6-4 lead over Asia Pacific on the opening day of the Sir Michael Bonallack Trophy in scorching India.

In the morning fourballs, Moynihan was the strong man as he made five birdies in an immaculate round as they held off a late charge from India's Karan Taunk and New Zealand's Joshua Munn to win 1 up in temperatures of 35C.

Bidding for a fourth successive win in the event and a sixth in nine editions since it was inaugurated in 1998, Europe still lost the session 3-2 with England's Ashley Chesters and Ryan Evans the only other winners.

But the story changed in the afternoon and while Albert Eckhardt and Robbie Van West were thrashed 6 and 5 by Geoff Drakeford and Taylor MacDonald in the opening foursomes, Europe hit back to win the remaining five matches.

Moynihan and McElroy were one under par (card) as they beat China's Zecheng Dou / Jin Cheng 3 and 2 in the anchor foursomes after Chesters and Evans, Germany's Dominic Foos and Max Roehrig and  Spain's Mario Galiano and Italy's Renato Paratore also won their matches.

Andrew Morgan, captain of Team Europe, said, “We were a little disappointed after being behind 2 to 3 after the morning but our players were determined and upped their game in the afternoon.

"Evans on one team and Gavin Moynihan of Ireland really put up a great show by winning their matches convincingly with their partners and our goal is to win each of the remaining sessions over the next two days.”

The 2010 edition of the event was scheduled for Karnataka Golf Club but was cancelled as a result of the eruptions of Eyjafjallajökull volcano in Iceland, which shut down European air space and isolated European players.

Sir Michael Bonallack Trophy - scores