Rory McIlroy avoids the LIV Golf stars as he begins his bid for major glory at The Open alongside Jon Rahm and Justin Rose at Royal Liverpool on Thursday
- McIlroy hopes to end his great nine-year drought at Hoylake this weekend
- He arrives in top form after winning the Scottish Open with a brilliant performance
- McIlroy has been a partner of Masters champion Jon Rahm and Justin Rose
Rory McIlroy has avoided being paired with the stars of LIV Golf, after tee times for the first day of action at The Open were confirmed.
The 34-year-old, who won the Open the last time it was held at Hoylake in 2014, will be looking to continue his success at the Scottish Open and end his nine-year drought.
He has been grouped alongside Masters champion Jon Rahm and former world number 1 Justin Rose, for the first two rounds of the 151st edition of The Open.
Fans will have to wait to see McIlroy in action on Thursday as he starts at 2:59 p.m., before kicking off earlier at 9:58 a.m. on Friday.
Cameron Smith is the defending champion and has been placed on the opposite side of the draw alongside US Open winner Wyndham Clarke and Xander Schauffele.
Rory McIlroy has been paired with Justin Rose and Jon Rahm for the start of The Open
McIlroy teamed up with Justin Rose (left) and Jon Rahm (right) in the first two rounds.
McIlroy hopes to repeat his success at Hoylake at the 2014 Open Championship
Among other notable players involved, world number 1 Scottie Scheffler is in the group before Smith, along with Tommy Fleetwood and Adam Scott.
LIV Golf’s Brooks Koepka also has a morning tee time along with world number 4 Patrick Cantlay and Hideki Katsuyama.
Jordan Spieth for his part has been with Matt Fitzpatrick and Jason Day.
Phil Mickelson leaves at 15:23 along with Nick Taylor and Adam Schenk, and Bryson DeChambeau is with Cameron Young and Kim Si-woo at 10:20.
McIlroy has enjoyed the ideal preparation as he tries to end his long drought this weekend.
He traveled to Hoylake on Sunday afternoon, having won the Scottish Open in style, braving strong winds to birdie the last two holes and beat home favorite Robert MacIntyre with a single stroke.
“I couldn’t ask for better preparation,” he told BBC Sport NI. ‘The way I played the last two holes (in Scotland) was an amazing finish and a perfect way to start this week.
“I had a great nine years and won a lot of tournaments, but the big four eluded me.” I hope this week that is something that can change.
It’s nice to be back here. It’s not like I think about it that often, so it’s nice to go back and reacquaint myself with the course. It’s nice to come back to an important place where you’ve won, but it also makes you feel a bit old.”
The action begins Thursday at 6:35 a.m., with the final players due to tee off at 4:16 p.m.
Featured hours on Thursdays
09:03: Jordan Spieth, Matt Fitzpatrick and Jason Day
09:36 – Patrick Cantlay, Brooks Koepka and Hideki Matsuyama
9:47 – Scottie Scheffler, Tommy Fleetwood and Adam Scott
09:58: Cameron Smith, Xander Schauffele and Wyndham Clark
10:09 – Shane Lowry, Rickie Fowler and Robert MacIntyre
10:20 a.m. – Bryson DeChambeau, Si Woo-kim and Cameron Young
2:59 p.m. – Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm and Justin Rose
15:10 – Collin Morikawa, Max Homa and Tyrrell Hatton
3:21pm – Phil Mickelson, Nick Taylor and Adam Schenk