Masters tee times 2014: Pairings and start time for Thursday's opening round

Harry How

The first round of the Masters has arrived, but many of the biggest names will have to wait a while for their chance to tee off.

The 2014 golf season is technically a few months old, but the unofficial start to the year has finally arrived. The honorary starters are ready to send the first tee shots off No. 1 and the 2014 Masters is about to commence. The wide-open field won't include Tiger Woods, but with so many other players playing well, some expect this to be one of the most tightly contested Masters in history.

Heading into a typical Masters, there are maybe 20 players in the field who have a legitimate shot at winning. Whether it's from the strength of the field, or just the nature of who is playing well, there are usually only a select few -- maybe 12 to 15. That appears to be the complete opposite this week. Dry conditions will allow the course to firm up, a key element for shorter-hitting players to contend. That, combined with the lack of a dominant player or group of players, leaves us a wide-open field. Rory McIlroy -- one of the betting favorites -- was asked early in the week how many players in the 97-person field have a legitimate shot to win.

"I would say 70," said McIlroy, via Golf.com. "You've got a lot of guys that can win, a lot of guys that have won PGA Tour events."

The first round won't make or break a player's chances to come away with the green jacket, but it could have a significant impact. With such a talented field, the first round will also include a host of notable pairings. Some groups feature multiple major championship winners. Others are a combination of rising stars paired with all-time greats. It all sets up for what should be a very entertaining opening day at Augusta.

With 49 of the top 50 players in the world in the field, notable players will being teeing off every 11 minutes all day, but the afternoon groups appear to be the more loaded pairings. Phil Mickelson will be joined by Ernie Els and Justin Rose in the opening round and the three will tee off at 1:48 p.m. ET, the second-to-last group. Bubba Watson, the 2012 Masters champion, will also play in the afternoon, joined by Sergio Garcia and Luke Donald. The three will tee off at 1:15 p.m., one group ahead of Jason Day, Dustin Johnson and Henrik Stenson. Hunter Mahan, Keegan Bradley and Lee Westwood are among the other notable names going off in the late groups.

Defending Masters champion Adam Scott will hit the course a few hours earlier. He's set to tee off at 10:41 a.m., joined by Jason Dufner and amateur Matthew Fitzpatrick. Rickie Fowler, Graeme McDowell and Jimmy Walker will form one of the featured morning groups. They'll begin their round at 9:35 a.m., just before the group of K.J. Choi, Zach Johnson and Steve Stricker.

Here is the full first-round tee sheet. All times Eastern.

Tee time

Players

7:45 a.m.

Stewart Cink

Tim Clark

7:56 a.m.

John Huh

Kevin Stadler

Ian Woosnam

8:07 a.m.

Jonas Blixt

Ben Crenshaw

Y.E. Yang

8:18 a.m.

Steven Bowditch

Jordan Niebrugge

Mark O'Meara

8:29 a.m.

David Lynn

John Senden

Boo Weekley

8:40 a.m.

Martin Kaymer

Craig Stadler

Scott Stallings

8:51 a.m.

Billy Horschel

Tom Watson

Brendon de Jonge

9:02 a.m.

Roberto Castro

Matt Every

Mike Weir

9:13 a.m.

Angel Cabrera

Ian Poulter

Gary Woodland

9:24 a.m.

Fred Couples

Chang-woo Lee

Webb Simpson

9:35 a.m.

Rickie Fowler

Graeme McDowell

Jimmy Walker

9:57 a.m.

K.J. Choi

Zach Johnson

Steve Stricker

10:08 a.m.

Bill Haas

Miguel Angel Jimenez

Matteo Manassero

10:19 a.m.

Jamie Donaldson

Hideki Matsuyama

Brandt Snedeker

10:30 a.m.

Jim Furyk

Thorbjorn Olesen

Charl Schwartzel

10:41 a.m.

Jason Dufner

Matthew Fitzpatrick

Adam Scott

10:52 a.m.

Rory McIlroy

Patrick Reed

Jordan Spieth

11:03 a.m.

D.A. Points

Kevin Streelman

11:14 a.m.

Branden Grace

Mike McCoy

Larry Mize

11:25 a.m.

Ken Duke

Matt Jones

Sandy Lyle

11:36 a.m.

Lucas Glover

Jose Maria Olazabal

Garrick Porteous

11:47 a.m.

Darren Clarke

Stephen Gallacher

Nick Watney

12:09 p.m.

Thomas Bjorn

Ryan Moore

Vijay Singh

12:20 p.m.

Thongchai Jaidee

Matt Kuchar

Louis Oosthuizen

12:31 p.m.

Graham DeLaet

Oliver Goss

Trevor Immelman

12:42 p.m.

Sang-Moon Bae

Derek Ernst

Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano

12:53 p.m.

Chris Kirk

Bernhard Langer

Francesco Molinari

1:04 p.m.

Jason Day

Dustin Johnson

Henrik Stenson

1:15 p.m.

Luke Donald

Sergio Garcia

Bubba Watson

1:26 p.m.

Marc Leishman

Joost Luiten

Hunter Mahan

1:37 p.m.

Keegan Bradley

Victor Dubuisson

Peter Hanson

1:48 p.m.

Ernie Els

Phil Mickelson

Justin Rose

1:59 p.m.

Harris English

Russell Henley

Lee Westwood

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