Martin paired with host Love, defending champ Kirk


ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – If Ben Martin needed a reminder that his career had reached a new level, all he needed to do was glance at the tee sheet for Rounds 1 and 2 at the McGladrey Classic.

Following his first PGA Tour victory last week in Las Vegas, Martin has been moved into a higher category for tee times and will play alongside tournament host and 20-time Tour winner Davis Love III and defending champion Chris Kirk.

“I'm playing with Davis and Chris Kirk, so a little bit of a new pairing for me on Thursday and Friday,” Martin smiled on Wednesday at Sea Island Resort.

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Although Martin is part of Thursday’s premier pairing which heads out at 12:35 p.m. (ET) off the first tee, many observers will be watching the 8:15 a.m. threesome off the 10th tee that will include Webb Simpson and Bill Haas.

The two have been tied together following news that U.S. Ryder Cup captain Tom Watson appeared to make an 11th-hour decision to use one of his three captain’s picks on Simpson instead of Haas.

According to various sources, Watson had settled on Haas as a pick but an early text message sent to the captain by Simpson the day the picks were made seemed to change Watson's mind.