TIGER WOODS, COMING off a victory last Sunday at the Memorial, will be paired alongside Masters winner Bubba Watson and long-time rival Phil Mickelson in the first two rounds of the US Open.
And pairings released on Thursday by the US Golf Association also have defending champion and World Number 2 Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland paired alongside England’s World Number 1 Luke Donald and World Number 3 Lee Westwood.
Woods, Watson and Mickelson will tee off together at 7:33 next Thursday morning in round one on the back nine and at 1:18 Friday afternoon in round two off the first tee.
The top-ranked trio begin off the first tee at 1:29 pm on Thursday and off the back nine at 7:44 am on Friday.
South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen, Australian Jason Day and American Jason Dufner, twice a winner in recent weeks, will play together in the first two rounds.
So will Japanese star Ryo Ishikawa and Americans Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler.
England’s Justin Rose will play alongside Germany’s Martin Kaymer and American Hunter Mahan while England’s Ian Poulter is paired with Americans Steve Stricker and Matt Kuchar.
Australian Adam Scott was matched with Keegan Bradley, who won last year’s PGA Championship, and another American, Webb Simpson.
South African Ernie Els will open alongside Argentina’s Angel Cabrera and Australian Geoff Ogilvy.
American Casey Martin, who needs a cart to play due to a rare circulatory disorder in his right leg, will be in the first afternoon group off the first tee on Thursday.