Rory McIlroy, Shane Lowry and Séamus Power learn Dell Match Play opponents

Rory McIlroy. Picture by Charlie Neibergall

Brian Keogh

Ireland’s trio of hopefuls have been handed Major rivals for the group stage of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play in Texas.

Rory McIlroy will get his final Masters preparations underway when he faces American Scott Stallings in his first round robin match in Texas on Wednesday.

The four-time Major winner is the top seed in Group 3 alongside Stallings, top putter Denny McCarthy and fellow Major winner Keegan Bradley, who will be his final group opponent at Austin Country Club on Friday.

Former Open champion Shane Lowry is drawn in Group 12 and faces a likely group decider with three-time Major champion Jordan Spieth on Friday.

The Offaly man takes on American Taylor Montgomery tomorrow and Canadian Mackenzie Hughes on Thursday before his final group match with the in-form Texan.

It’s also a tough draw for West Waterford’s Séamus Power, who got to the quarter-finals before losing to current world number one and current Masters champion Scottie Scheffler on his debut last year.

The Toorneena man is in Group 13 and faces Sam Burns on the opening day and Canada’s Adam Hadwin on day two before a Friday showdown with 2013 Masters champion Adam Scott.

The 64-strong field is divided into 16 groups. Players will play everyone in their group from Wednesday to Friday and earn one point for a win and half a point for a halved matched.

The 16 group winners advance to the knockout stages with the last 16 and the quarter-finals on Saturday, followed by the semifinals on Sunday morning and the final and third place-matches on Sunday afternoon.

Defending champion Scheffler faces American Davis Riley in the first round before facing Sweden’s Alex Noren and world number 19 Tom Kim.


Tee times for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday