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The Open: Tiger gets to play a round with Rose
8:14am Tuesday 17th July 2012 in Golf
Tiger Woods and Justin Rose have been paired together in the first two rounds of the Open Championship for the fourth time.
The duo, who will be joined by Spain’s Sergio Garcia, were also partners at Muirfield in 2002, Carnoustie in 2007 and St Andrews two years ago.
They tee off at 9.42am in the first round on Thursday and 2.43pm on Friday. Just ahead of them each day will be defending champion Darren Clarke and Lee Westwood – but not together.
Clarke begins his bid to retain the Claret Jug at 9.09am in the company of 2002 winner Ernie Els and American Zach Johnson, winner of the John Deere Classic in Illinois this weekend.
Westwood, making his 58th attempt to lift a major title, is alongside Masters champion Bubba Watson and Japan’s comparatively little-known Yoshinori Fujimoto.
Those arriving really early will have the chance to see three former winners playing together.
Sandy Lyle and Americans Todd Hamilton and Mark Calcavecchia will be on the first tee at just after 7am – yet the Championship will be well under way by then.
Because the field is 157, one more than usual because of all the different exempt players, the action kicks off at 6.19am with a two-ball of 52-year-old former Ryder Cup player Barry Lane, who came through qualifying, and American James Driscoll.
World number one Luke Donald has been paired with Phil Mickelson, but they have to wait until 2.43pm on Thursday to hit their first shots – and both Rory McIlroy and Padraig Harrington are afternoon starters as well.
Second-ranked McIlroy is with 2010 champion Louis Oosthuizen and reigning USPGA champion Keegan Bradley at 2.21pm, followed by 2007 and 2008 winner Harrington alongside young American Rickie Fowler and European amateur champion Manuel Trappel.
The Austrian is one of only two amateurs in the field. Northern Ireland’s Alan Dunbar, who won the British title last month, is the other and he partners Adam Scott and Matt Kuchar at 8.42am.
Five-time champion Tom Watson, the 62-year-old who last year saw England’s Tom Lewis shoot an opening 65 that was the lowest round ever by an amateur in the championship, is this time playing with Germany’s Martin Kaymer and Japanese star Ryo Ishikawa.
It is three years ago that Watson nearly rewrote the record books. He lost in a play-off to Stewart Cink at Turnberry – scene of his 1977 victory – when winning would have made him the oldest major champion by an amazing 11 years.