Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson & Graeme McDowell to play together on Thursday & Friday as will World No. 1 Martin Kaymer, No. 2 Lee Westwood & No. 3 Luke Donald
NEW YORK – Mar. 9, 2011 – Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and 2010 U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell will play together in the same group on Thursday and Friday at the WGC-Cadillac Championship from TPC Blue Monster at Doral in Miami, Fla. World No. 1 Martin Kaymer, No. 2 Lee Westwood and No. 3 Luke Donald will also be a featured group for the first two rounds of the tournament. The field is the most competitive of the year so far with all of the top 50 players in the Official World Golf Rankings competing. Of the tournament’s 69 players, 60 rank within the top 65.
NBC Sports Group will present 20 hours of live complete-round coverage of the tournament Thursday through Sunday on Golf Channel and NBC. Golf Channel will air live first- and second-round action on Thursday and Friday from 2-6 p.m. ET and an additional four hours of live action on the weekend beginning at Noon ET on Saturday and 1 p.m. ET on Sunday. The weekend coverage leads directly into “Golf Channel on NBC” (2-6 p.m. ET, Saturday; 3-7 p.m. ET, Sunday). Golf Channel will also replay four hours of the WGC-Cadillac in primetime each night on Thursday and Friday (8:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. ET).
NBC SPORTS GROUP SCHEDULE (all times ET):
First Round 2-6 p.m. (Live) / 8:30 p.m. -12:30 a.m. (Replay) Golf Channel
Second Round 2-6 p.m. (Live) / 8:30 p.m. -12:30 a.m. (Replay) Golf Channel
Third Round 12-2 p.m. (Live) Golf Channel
Third Round 2-6 p.m. (Live) NBC
Final Round 1-3 p.m. (Live) Golf Channel
Final Round 3-7 p.m. (Live) NBC
GOLF CENTRAL: Golf Central will precede every live round of Golf Channel’s WGC-Cadillac coverage with a half-hour program. It will also air from 6-6:30 p.m. ET on Thursday-Saturday and 7-7:30 p.m. ET on Sunday. Golf Central is Golf Channel’s studio show that provides the only live, daily source for comprehensive and up-to-date news from around the world of golf.
DIGITAL: Fans can access exclusive behind-the-scenes content of the NBC Sports Group’s golf coverage via Facebook (www.facebook.com/golfchannel) and Twitter (@golfchannel). NBCSports.com’s ProGolfTalk will feature previews, recaps and analysis of all the stories and results of the event.
COMMENTATORS: Dan Hicks and Johnny Miller, in their 12th season together, will anchor ‘Golf Channel on NBC’ coverage Saturday and Sunday from the main tower. Former Doral champion Gary Koch (1983) and Peter Jacobsen will serve as tower reporters while Roger Maltbie, Mark Rolfing and Dottie Pepper will report from the course. Jimmy Roberts will serve as interviewer/essayist.
Kelly Tilghman and Frank Nobilo will host Golf Channel coverage. Koch (tower), Jacobsen (tower), Roberts (Tower), Rolfing (course), Maltbie (course) and Pepper (course) will also work Golf Channel’s coverage, joining interviewer Steve Sands.
FORMER CHAMPION KOCH: “Anytime you gather that many of the top players in the world together, it says an awful lot about a tournament. It’s a small field so, as a player, you naturally think it would be easier to win. But then you start to see the quality of the roster of who’s here and you can make an argument that it’s harder to win…It’s rare to find someone playing well at this tournament who hasn’t been playing well coming into the event. I always say that you’re not going to find your game at a major and this is similar.”
34 FOR 34: Golf Channel’s early-round coverage of The Honda Classic on the PGA TOUR last week was up 31 percent over 2010, keeping alive the network’s streak of consecutive rounds delivering higher ratings than comparable rounds in 2010. The streak now stands at 34. Through the first nine weeks of the season, viewership of the PGA TOUR on Golf Channel is up 49 percent over last year.
GOLF CHANNEL AND NBC SPORTS CO-BRANDING: All golf coverage on NBC has been re-branded as “Golf Channel on NBC.” The coverage incorporates the Golf Channel look throughout every telecast, down to the logo on the NBC Sports commentators’ apparel. Golf Channel’s tournament graphics are showcased throughout all coverage, which now includes a custom-made Golf Channel-NBC peacock combination logo. And, “Golf Channel powered by NBC Sports” is being incorporated into all of Golf Channel’s coverage.
–NBC Sports Group–