St. Louis - Former world No 1 Tiger Woods was paired with four-time major winner Rory McIlroy and defending champion Justin Thomas in tee times for the 100th PGA Championship revealed on Friday.
Woods, a 14-time major champion, shared sixth at The Open last month and briefly led in the final round, his best contention in a major since spinal fusion surgery last year after years of back pain struggles.
Woods, who last won a major title at the 2008 US Open, seeks a fifth career PGA crown next week at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis. That would match the record career total shared by Jack Nicklaus and Walter Hagen.
McIlroy, Woods and Thomas, who took his first major title last year at Quail Hollow, will begin off the 10th tee in the first round at 15:23 (SA time) next Thursday and start off the first tee next Friday at 20:48 (SA time).
Two groups and 22 minutes ahead of that trio will be five-time major winner Phil Mickelson, fellow American Keegan Bradley and another past PGA champion, Australia's Jason Day.
A group in front of that are major winners Danny Willett of England and Henrik Stenson of Sweden plus American Pat Perez. Just ahead of them are three players seeking a first major crown - American Rickie Fowler, Japan's Hideki Matsuyama and England's Ian Poulter.
US Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk tees off two groups ahead of that alongside two potential members of the team he will take to France next month, Tony Finau and Xander Schauffele.
The traditional grouping of the year's three prior major winners was made for the last time, with Open winner Francesco Molinari of Italy, US Open winner Brooks Koepka and fellow American Patrick Reed, the Masters champion, set to start at 20:15 in Round 1 and 14:50 in Round 2.
Next year, the tournament moves to May.
Two groups after this year's major winners is the trio of Spain's Jon Rahm, England's Justin Rose and American Jordan Spieth, who hopes to win the event to complete a career Grand Slam.
Two groups in front of the 2018 major champions is another star threesome - world No 1 Dustin Johnson, fellow American and two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson and Australia's Adam Scott.