British Open 2014 Tee Times: Pairings and Predictions for Sunday

R. Cory Smith@@RCorySmithSenior Writer IJuly 19, 2014

HOYLAKE, ENGLAND - JULY 19:  Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland celebrates holing an eagle putt on the 16th green during the third round of The 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 19, 2014 in Hoylake, England.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The third round of the 2014 British Open was much of the same with Rory McIlroy roaring his way through the course at Royal Liverpool to lead heading into the final day.

The Northern Irish player is currently 16 under and paces the field by a full six shots. After cruising to the lead on Friday, McIlroy expanded on it by closing out the round strong and finishing with a four-under 68.

Saturday was actually McIlroy's worst round of the tournament, but that comes after two consecutive days of six shots under par. With the weather clearly not affecting his game, McIlroy has a chance to clinch his third major and first Open title.

Despite his success at Hoylake through three rounds, McIlroy knows just how crucial Sunday will be, per the PGA Tour account:

In order to make Sunday a memorable one, he will have to hold off the likes of Rickie Fowler, Sergio Garcia and Dustin Johnson. With all three players in the final two groups on Sunday, fans in the United States can bear witness to golf history without waking up before 5 a.m.

Before the world's best look to master Hoylake yet again, here's a look at the leaderboard and pairings for the final round of play, per

2014 British Open Sunday Tee Times
GroupPlayersStart Time (ET)
1Charley Hoffman; Billy Hurley III3:35 a.m.
2Ryan Palmer; Jamie McLeary3:45 a.m.
3Tom Watson; John Senden3:55 a.m.
4Brendan Todd; Jason Day4:05 a.m.
5Koumei Oda; Rhein Gibson4:15 a.m.
6Brooks Koepka; Thorbjorn Olesen4:25 a.m.
7Stewart Cink; Matt Every4:35 a.m.
8Tiger Woods; Jason Dufner4:45 a.m.
9Gregory Bourdy; Matt Kuchar5 a.m.
10Chris Wood; Paul Casey5:10 a.m.
11Henrik Stenson; Thomas Bjorn5:20 a.m.
12Chris Rodgers; Martin Kaymer5:30 a.m.
13Matt Jones; Brandt Snedeker5:40 a.m.
14Zach Johnson; Luke Donald5:50 a.m.
15Hideki Matsuyama; D.A. Points6 a.m.
16Gary Woodland; Thongchai Jaidee6:10 a.m.
17Hunter Mahan; Kevin Stadler6:25 a.m.
18Kevin Na; Bill Haas6:35 a.m.
19Phil Mickelson; Angel Cabrera6:45 a.m.
20Kevin Streelman; Louis Oosthuizen6:55 a.m.
21David Hearn; Ben Martin7:05 a.m.
22Francesco Molinari; George Coetzee7:15 a.m.
23Shane Lowry; Kristoffer Broberg7:25 a.m.
24Keegan Bradley; Chris Kirk7:35 a.m.
25Brian Harman; Jordan Spieth7:50 a.m.
26David Howell; Stephen Gallacher8 a.m.
27Byeong-Hun An; Branden Grace8:10 a.m.
28Ryan Moore; Marc Warren8:20 a.m.
29Jimmy Walker; Marc Leishman8:30 a.m.
30Justin Rose; Graeme McDowell8:40 a.m.
31Darren Clarke; Charl Schwartzel8:50 a.m.
32Jim Furyk; Robert Karlsson9 a.m.
33Adam Scott; Matteo Manassero9:10 a.m.
34Edoardo Molinari; Victor Dubusson9:20 a.m.
35Dustin Johnson; Sergio Garcia9:30 a.m.
36Rickie Fowler; Rory McIlroy9:40 a.m.

Rory McIlroy Will Hoist First Claret Jug

HOYLAKE, ENGLAND - JULY 19:  Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland reacts on the 3rd green during the third round of The 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 19, 2014 in Hoylake, England.  (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

With a charging field behind him and the eyes of the golf world upon him, McIlroy will have plenty of pressure on his shoulders yet again. Following a staggering finish on Saturday, the 25-year-old has proved he can handle that pressure.

Just how masterful has McIlroy been so far? The Open's official account notes just how historically great he's played:

He's also gunning for more history on Sunday, as Justin Ray of the Golf Channel points out:

McIlroy has won his last two major tournaments after holding a lead through 54 holes. While many remember the 2011 Masters meltdown, he shot under par in the 2011 U.S. Open and 2012 PGA Championship to take both titles.

One of the ways he'll retain his lead will be through continuing to blister par fives. McIlroy's biggest shot of the day came near the end on a par five, as the PGA Tour account notes:

Expect more of the same from McIlroy as he continues to rout the field and take his first British Open title on Sunday.

Prediction: McIlroy shoots 67 to clinch title.

Rickie Fowler Contends, Falls Short of Open Title

HOYLAKE, ENGLAND - JULY 19:  Rickie Fowler of the United States hits an approach shot during the third round of The 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 19, 2014 in Hoylake, England.  (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

For fans who are in any way surprised by the fact that Fowler is in contention heading into the final round, just know this: His game has come a long way.

Fowler used to be known simply for his flashy style and youth but has shined this season in major tournaments. After finishing in the top five in both the Masters and U.S. Open, Fowler is in a familiar place heading into Sunday at Hoylake.

As for his chances during the final round, ESPN Stats & Info provides some background on the last two winners:

Sure, he'll still likely wear some type of highlighter outfit and shock the crowd, but Fowler will also surprise some with his game. On the heels of yet another strong round leading up to the final day of a major, the 25-year-old will meet a similar fate from the U.S. Open by finishing second.

Prediction: Fowler finishes with 68 and tied for second.

Tiger Woods Finishes at Even Par

HOYLAKE, ENGLAND - JULY 19:  Tiger Woods of the United States tees off on the 10th hole during the third round of The 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 19, 2014 in Hoylake, England.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Out of 36 pairings on the final day, Tiger Woods tees off in the eighth.

After a steady start to the British Open, Woods has fallen well off the pace and has no chance of recovering to contend for a win. The 14-time major winner spoke about his struggles so far, per The Open's account:

Not only does the loss continue his stall at 14 majors, but it also puts him behind Jack Nicklaus' pace. Years of struggling to claim another title on the big stage have finally caught up if he fails to hoist the Claret Jug at the age of 38, something Nicklaus did to claim his 15th major.

While it won't be a victory or truly help heal the wounds of another rough showing, Woods will recover to finish at even par on Sunday. With a slim bit of confidence after the tournament, Woods has to hope he can contend at the PGA Championship later this year.

Prediction: Woods recovers by shooting three under on Sunday.

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