Officials from the PGA of America take great delight in creating interesting, star-studded and sometimes downright quirky groupings for the PGA Championship’s
opening rounds, and this week at Kiawah Island’s Ocean Course
will be no exception.
The past two PGA Championships winners, Keegan Bradley (2011) and Germany’s Martin Kaymer (2010) will be grouped with four-time PGA champion Tiger Woods in what promises to be one of most popular groups – if not the favorite – in the first two rounds of the 2012 PGA Championship.
Woods, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour this year, Bradley and Kaymer will tee off at the 10th tee at The Ocean Course at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, and go off the first tee at 1:40 p.m. Friday. Groupings are adjusted by scores following the first two rounds.
Another fan-friendly grouping will be the traditional PGA Championship trio featuring winners of the year’s first three majors. Masters champion Bubba Watson, U.S. Open winner Webb Simpson and British Open titlist Ernie Els are scheduled for 1:20 p.m. Thursday off No. 1, and 8:10 a.m. Friday off No. 10.
Three other sets of past PGA Championship winners will be matched up for the first two rounds. They are:
Shaun Micheel (2003 winner), David Toms (2001) and John Daly (1991) – Thursday, 8:20 a.m., No. 1; Friday, 1:30 p.m., No. 10 (Daly’s win came after he was the final alternate to make the field)
Padraig Harrington (2008), Phil Mickelson (2005) and Davis Love III (1997) – Thursday, 1:40 p.m., No. 1; Friday, 8:30 a.m., No. 10 (Love is captain of this fall’s U.S. Ryder Cup team)
Y.E. Yang (2009), Rich Beem (2002) and Vijay Singh (1998 and 2004) – Thursday, 1:30 p.m., No. 10; Friday, 8:20 a.m., No. 1 (Yang ended Woods’ streak of 14 major victories when leading through 54 holes)
Other notable groups for the first two rounds:
Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Jim Furyk – Thursday, 8:10 a.m., No. 10; Friday, 1:20 p.m., No. 1 (Johnson, a Columbia, S.C., native, missed the 2010 PGA playoff when he was penalized for grounding his club in a bunker on the final hole of regulation.)
Louis Oosthuizen, Ian Poulter and Steve Stricker – Thursday, 8:40 a.m., No. 10; Friday, 1:50 p.m., No. 1 (Oosthuizen lost this year’s Masters playoff to Bubba Watson.)
Lee Westwood, Bill Haas and Angel Cabrera – Thursday, 8:50 a.m., No. 10; Friday, 2 p.m., No. 1 (Haas, of Greenville, S.C., won last year’s FedExCup playoffs and $11.44 million prize; Cabrera has two major titles.)
Charl Schwartzel, Rickie Fowler and Nicolas Colsaerts – Thursday, 1 p.m., No. 1; Friday, 7:50 a.m., No. 10 (Schwartzel won the Masters in 2011.)
Hunter Mahan, Adam Scott and Sergio Garcia – Thursday, 1:10 p.m., No. 1; Friday, 8 a.m., No. 10 (Scott and Garcia both lost British Opens after leading late.)
Luke Donald, Brandt Snedeker and Zach Johnson – Thursday, 1:30 p.m., No. 1; Friday, 8:20 a.m., No. 10 (Donald is the world’s No. 1-ranked player.)
The top 108 players in this week’s Official World Rankings are in the field, which includes 13 PGA Champions and 32 major champions. For the complete list of groupings, click here
and find the “News Alert” box in the upper right-hand corner and click on “First- and second-round pairings and tee times have been released.”