Thomas draws ’19 champ Kisner in WGC group


March Madness will makes its way to the golf world this week, as the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play event is set to commence Wednesday at Austin Country Club in Texas after a year off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

World No. 1 Dustin Johnson, who won this event in 2017, is the overall top seed for the fourth straight year. The reigning Masters champion will be featured in a group rounded out by Kevin Na, Robert MacIntyre (41) and Adam Long (61).

Justin Thomas, who won the Players Championship two weeks ago, didn’t get any favors with Monday’s draw. His group includes Louis Oosthuizen, Kevin Kisner and Matt Kuchar. Kisner defeated Kuchar in the 2019 final, and world No. 23 Oosthuizen has made five straight cuts on the PGA Tour, including three finishes in the top 15, and was runner-up at this event in 2016.

A look at the full pairings:

Group 1 (seeds in parentheses):

(1) Dustin Johnson, United States

(28) Kevin Na, United States

(41) Bob MacIntyre, Scotland

(61) Adam Long, United States

Group 2

(2) Justin Thomas, United States

(22) Louis Oosthuizen, South Africa

(34) Kevin Kisner, United Statets

(52) Matt Kuchar, United States

Group 3

(3) Jon Rahm, Spain

(24) Ryan Palmer, United States

(38) Shane Lowry, Ireland

(56) Sebastian Munoz, Colombia

Group 4

(4) Collin Morikawa, United States

(32) Billy Horschel, United States

(35) Max Homa, United States

(63) J.T. Poston, United States

Group 5

(5) Bryson DeChambeau, United States

(21) Tommy Fleetwood, England

(45) Si Woo Kim, South Korea

(58) Antoine Rozner, France

Group 6

(6) Xander Schauffele, United States

(30) Scottie Scheffler, United States

(44) Jason Day, Australia

(57) Andy Sullivan, England

Group 7

(7) Patrick Reed, United States

(26) Joaquin Niemann, Chile

(33) Christiaan Bezuidenhout, South Africa

(55) Bubba Watson, United States

Group 8

(8) Tyrrell Hatton, England

(18) Lee Westwood, England

(39) Sergio Garcia, Spain

(51) Matt Wallace, England

Group 9

(9) Webb Simpson, United States

(17) Paul Casey, England

(48) Mackenzie Hughes, Canada

(59) Talor Gooch, United States

Group 10

(10) Patrick Cantlay, United States

(23) Hideki Matsuyama, Japan

(42) Carlos Ortiz, Mexico

(54) Brian Harman, United States

Group 11

(11) Rory McIlroy, Northern Ireland

(25) Cameron Smith, Australia

(46) Lanto Griffin, United States

(60) Ian Poulter, England

Group 12

(12) Tony Finau, United States

(29) Jason Kokrak, United States

(40) Will Zalatoris, United States

(64) Dylan Frittelli, South Africa

Group 13

(13) Viktor Hovland, Norway

(27) Abraham Ancer, Mexico

(43) Bernd Wiesberger, Austria

(53) Kevin Streelman, United States

Group 14

(14) Daniel Berger, United States

(19) Harris English, United States

(47) Brendon Todd, United States

(62) Erik van Rooyen, South Africa

Group 15

(15) Matt Fitzpatrick, England

(20) Matthew Wolff, United States

(37) Corey Conners, Canada

(49) Jordan Spieth, United States

Group 16

(16) Sungjae Im, South Korea

(31) Victor Perez, France

(36) Marc Leishman, Australia

(50) Russell Henley, United States

Pool play at the WGC event will run Wednesday through Friday. The player with the best record from each group will advance to the Round of 16, which begins Saturday. The quarterfinals are that afternoon, with the semifinals and finals Sunday.

Brooks Koepka, Gary Woodland, Adam Scott, Justin Rose and Tiger Woods are the five players not among the top 64 in the world to elect not to play this week. They were replaced in the field by the next five available in this week’s world ranking — Poulter, Rooyen, Long, Poston and Frittelli, who played college golf at Texas.

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