The PGA Championship, the last major of the year, will get underway on Thursday morning and the Irish contingent have interesting groups to tee-off with at Atlanta Athletic Club in Georgia.
Padraig Harrington has not been at his best in recent times, a problem he has in common with Tiger Woods, who he will be teeing off with at 8.35am, as well as with Davis Love III.
Both Harrington and Woods have won this event; although the Irishman’s first and only win in 2008 came a year after Tiger’s fourth and last win in this tournament, having previously won it back to back in 1999 and 2000, and then again in 2006 and 2007.
Their playing partner Davis Love III has also won it, two years before Woods’ first, in ’97 and the trio’s tee-off and navigation of the Atlanta Athletic Club’s Highlands course should be intriguing to watch.
Friends and compatriots Darren Clarke and Rory McIlroy will tee-off in opposition alongside US Masters champion Charl Schwartzel at 1.45pm, as the battle of this year’s previous major winners commences.
McIlroy’s finishing position of 6th in the WGC Bridgestone Invitational was enough to see him reclaim fourth spot in golf’s world rankings, as he overtook American Steve Stricker, who is now in fifth place.
It will be interesting to see how each major champion of this year perform against each other and McIlroy will be the favourite as his opening day form in both the US Open and Masters was excellent.
His play in the Open Championship in Sandwich was not up to par but as that was a links course the Ulsterman will be expected to do better in Atlanta.
Graeme McDowell will tee-off with American Zach Johnson and Australian Geoff Ogilvy at 2.05pm and the former US Open champion will be hoping to improve on his display at the Firestone Country Club in Ohio last week, where he finished 9-over par.
World no. 1 Luke Donald is paired with Spaniard Alvaro Quiros and American Nick Watney while no. 2 Lee Westwood goes up against American Matt Kuchar and Australian Jason Day, who was once again around the top of the leaderboard at the Bridgestone Invitational.
The winner of that tournament last week, Adam Scott will tee-off with his playing partner of last weekend Ryo Ishikawa of Japan and Italian Matteo Massanero.