Duo Watson and Overton in rare all-rookie victory

By Tony Jimenez

NEWPORT, Wales (Reuters) - Bubba Watson and Jeff Overton became the first U.S. rookie pairing to triumph in an opening Ryder Cup session for 31 years when they defeated Luke Donald and Padraig Harrington 3 and 2 on Saturday.

Watson followed up with a second-hole birdie before his partner rattled in five birdies in seven holes from the ninth on the way to matching the feat of Andy Bean and Lee Elder in 1979.

The left-handed Watson, 31, was in playful mood when the game ended on the 16th green.

"I don't even like him (Overton)," he joked. "Look at him, he's ugly.

"His putter was hot this morning and I love him as a partner," Watson added on a more serious note. "We enjoy playing golf, and the two guys we played, they are great competitors and great champions."

Overton said the entire American team were gelling well on and off the course.

"There's a ton of spirit," said the 27-year-old. "We have got a lot but you've got to take your hats off to good old Padraig and Luke.

"They are excellent competitors and we really had a fun game out there."

(Editing by Martyn Herman)