Europe's starting line-up taking shape
Jose Maria Olazabal's picks for Friday's opening Ryder Cup foursomes at Medinah Country club appeared to be taking shape by the looks of Wednesday's second practice round.
Practising together over the front nine in Group Three were Luke Donald and Sergio Garcia alongside Northern Irish duo Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell.
The argument for sending out Donald and Garcia, perhaps in the opening match, are compelling as they are unbeaten in four previous such partnerships.
Englishman Donald has six wins out of six in the alternate-shot format, while Garcia is unbeaten in nine matches.
Just as compelling is the matchup of world No.1 McIlroy and his close friend McDowell as they have been all but joined at the hip since McIlroy made his Ryder Cup debut alongside his older countryman at Celtic Manor two years ago.
With Ian Poulter and Justin Rose hot favourites to also be on duty in the opening session all that would remain to be see was who Olazabal picks to play alongside his most experienced campaigner Lee Westwood.
The 39-year-old Englishman, who is winning his eighth cap, went out on Wednesday with the oldest man in the team, the in-form Paul Lawrie of Scotland, along with Belgian rookie Nicolas Colsaerts and Francesco Molinari of Italy.
Olazabal, understandably was giving nothing away on who would be in action on Friday morning other than saying that he had "a pretty good idea of what I want on Friday morning.
"I do have a few ideas but I'm not going to tell you anything about that," he added.
Olazabal also said that he had decided to give his 12-man team a restful day on Wednesday with just nine holes, having observed them over the full 18 on Tuesday when they first got acquainted with the remodelled Medinah course.
"Well, the thing is ... they saw the course yesterday, they saw every bit of it yesterday, and now it's just a matter of taking it a little bit easier today and tomorrow because Friday, 36 holes, Saturday, 36 holes, a lot of pressure, a lot of tension, so I want them just to take it a little bit easier than usually," he said.
Asked about his aptitude to play well in the foursomes - he was won eight and halved one in nine games - Garcia said it was all down to who he had been paired with.
"I think it's quite simple - I just had great partners," he said. "They just carried me home.
"I don't know. I've managed to gel nicely with the partners I've had -we've played well together, we've been comfortable together.
"There's no big secret about it. It's being able to play well at the right moments - foursomes is the toughest format we play, so being comfortable with who you're playing I think is key."
Westwood also enjoys the foursome format and he has a fine record of seven wins, two losses and four halves.
The opening alternate balls on Friday morning, he feels, are key in setting the tone for the weekend.
"The first session is quite important. You don't want to get too far behind," he said.
"And with it being foursomes, if you don't get momentum going in foursomes, it's very difficult to turn it around and get going in the right direction.
"So foursomes is a tricky format and it's important to get your combinations right.
"Over the last few years, we've been quite successful in foursomes, so maybe that's a bit of an advantage to us for it to be foursomes in the morning."