Sport Golf

Saturday 3 December 2016

McIlroy's early start for US Open

Published 13/06/2015 | 02:30

Rory McIlroy will play the first round of the US Open with defending champion Martin Kaymer
Rory McIlroy will play the first round of the US Open with defending champion Martin Kaymer

Martin Kaymer will start his title defence bright and early on Thursday at Chambers Bay when he plays the first round of the US Open with world No 1 Rory McIlroy.

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German Kaymer and British Open champion McIlroy will tee off 8.28am Pacific Time (4.38pm Irish Time). South Korean Yang Gunn, the US amateur champion, will complete what has become a traditional grouping.

The morning limelight will also focus on Phil Mickelson, a six-time US Open runner-up who needs a victory to complete the career Grand Slam. He will be off at 3.33 Irish time in the company of two-time Major champions Bubba Watson and Angel Cabrera.

Afternoon attention will focus on back-to-back groupings. At 10.17 Irish time, Masters champion Jordan Spieth will tee off with Australian Jason Day and 2013 champion Justin Rose of England.

Eleven minutes later, Tiger Woods will embark on his quest for a 15th Major title, accompanied by Players Championship winner Rickie Fowler and 2010 British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen.

Woods has not won a Major since the 2008 US Open, and will be coming off a career-worst round of 85 at the Memorial last Saturday.

On the PGA Tour last night, Pádraig Harrington missed the cut at the FedEx St Jude Classic. The Dubliner carded an even-par second round of 70 but missed out after his damaging five-over opening salvo of 75. Chris Smith, Russell Knox and Fabien Gomez held the early clubhouse lead on six-under.

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