Donald, McIlroy in dream two-ball
Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy will go head to head from the word go at this week’s Dubai World Championship.
World No 1 Luke Donald and World No 2 Rory McIlroy will go head to head from the very word go at this week’s season-closing Dubai World Championship.
And there is nothing contrived about it.
In what looks to be a dream climax for the European Tour, the stellar pair have been drawn together in the event’s marque two-ball for the simple reason that Donald was first and McIlroy second on the 60 strong list of players that qualified to play in this week’s European Tour grand finale at the imposing Greg Norman-designed Earth Course at the Jumeirah Estates.
Based on the same principle, Masters champion Charl Schwartzel, who was in third place coming into this week’s event, has been paired in the second-to-last slot with 2010 PGA Champion Martin Kaymer, the World No 4.
England’s World No 3 Lee Westwood is behind them, paired with Denmark’s Anders Hanson and fellow Dane Thomas Bjorn, a three-time Tour winner this year has been drawn with s two-time winner, Sergio Garcia, in the 4th last group.
At the top of the time sheet, last-gasp qualifiers Christian Nilsson of Sweden is teeing off on front of the field with Scott Jamieson at 11h42 (03h42 GMT) and Hennie Otto, who squeezed his way into the contest by winning the South African Open two weeks ago, is set to go off 10 minutes later with Scotland’s last major winner, Paul Lawrie.
DUBAI TEE TIMES
First-round tee-off times for Thursday’s first round of the Dubai World Championship at Jumeirah Golf Estates, on Thursday are (Gbr and Irl unless stated, all times GMT. Dubai is four hours ahead):
0340 Christian Nilsson (Swe), Scott Jamieson
0350 Hennie Otto (Rsa), Peter Lawrie
0400 Paul Lawrie, James Morrison
0410 Felipe Aguilar (Chi), Rhys Davies
0420 Ernie Els (Rsa), Jaco van Zyl (Rsa)
0430 Ross Fisher, Thorbjorn Olesen (Den)
0440 Lorenzo Gagli (Ita), Gregory Bourdy (Fra)
0450 Shane Lowry, Edoardo Molinari (Ita)
0500 Thomas Levet (Fra), Robert Karlsson (Swe)
0510 Robert Rock, David Horsey
0525 Johan Edfors (Swe), Fredrik Andersson Hed (Swe)
0535 David Lynn, Retief Goosen (Rsa)
0545 Jamie Donaldson, Raphael Jacquelin (Fra)
0555 Paul Casey, Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spa)
0605 Mark Foster, Matteo Manassero (Ita)
0615 YE Yang (Kor), George Coetzee (Rsa)
0625 Richie Ramsay, Gregory Havret (Fra)
0635 Francesco Molinari (Ita), Michael Hoey
0645 Joost Luiten (Ned), Ian Poulter
0655 Thomas Aiken (Rsa), Alvaro Quiros (Spa)
0710 Nicolas Colsaerts (Bel), Pablo Larrazabal (Spa)
0720 Peter Hanson (Swe), Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (Spa)
0730 Louis Oosthuizen (Rsa), Graeme McDowell
0740 Alexander Noren (Swe), Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa)
0750 Darren Clarke, Simon Dyson
0800 Thomas Bjorn (Den), Sergio Garcia (Spa)
0810 Anders Hansen (Den), Lee Westwood
0820 Charl Schwartzel (Rsa), Martin Kaymer (Ger)
0830 Rory McIlroy, Luke Donald
Jon Rahm aims for third Spanish Open title to emulate the late Seve Ballesteros
Ballesteros won his national open in 1981, 1985 and 1995.
Luke Donald expects Europe to be Ryder Cup underdogs despite home dominance
The United States cruised to a record 19-9 victory at Whistling Straits in 2021.
England’s Charley Hull triumphs in Texas to end six-year wait for LPGA title
The victory was the 26-year-old’s first on the LPGA Tour since prevailing at the CME Group Tour Championship in November 2016.
Ryan Fox remembers Shane Warne after St Andrews success
The New Zealander secured his third DP World Tour title in front of his family with a one-shot victory at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
Romain Langasque equals course record to lead Alfred Dunhill Links Championship
The Frenchman recovered from an early bogey with two eagles and eight birdies to reach 11 under par.
Rory McIlroy bemoans ‘ugly year’ and seeks solution to divide in golf world
The arrival of Saudi-backed LIV Golf series has fractured the game in 2022.
On this day in 2014 – Europe retain Ryder Cup with Gleneagles victory
The Gleneagles victory was Europe’s eighth win in 10 matches.
‘Is this where I am going to die?’ Nicolas Colsaerts on kidney disorder battle
The Belgian is the focus of attention this week as he belatedly defends the Cazoo Open de France title he won three years ago.
On this day in 2008: Ryder Cup misery in Louisville for Nick Faldo’s Europe team
Faldo was heavily criticised for his tactics in the closing singles.
Open champion Cameron Smith wins first LIV trophy in just second start
The world number two is the highest-ranked player to join the rebel series.