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US Open: World's top three drawn together for opening rounds

McIlroy will play alongside Donald and Westwood, while McDowell and Harrington have also been handed intriguing pairings.

Image: Kamran Jebreili/AP/Press Association Images

RORY MCILROY WILL be in the company of some familiar faces when he tees off the defence of his US Open title tomorrow.

The Co. Down man has been paired alongside, his rival for the world number one title, Luke Donald and Lee Westwood.

Current world number three,Westwood has enjoyed a somewhat spiky relationship with McIlroy since the Irishman split from the Chubby Chandler camp.

The world’s top trio will tee off in a prime time slot for European viewers (unless you happen to be watching Ireland v Spain) 13.29 local time.

However, you should be able to flick over in plenty of time to catch the back nine.

The same goes for 2010 champion, Graeme McDowell, who will be in the pairing following McIlroy.

McDowell will tour the course with a resurgent Sergio Garcia and the 2003 champion, Jim Furyk.

Padraig Harrington looks like he’ll be able to sit back and enjoy the action from Gdansk as he has been handed one of the eary tee-times alongside David Toms and Davis Love at 07.55 (14.55 Irish time).

Harrington will begin his round off the ninth tee, McIlroy and McDowell will enjoy the more conventional start from the first tee at the Olympic Club.

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Sean Farrell

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