Rory, Rickie together in Sunday's final pairing


HOYLAKE, England – Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler know each other well. They first got a chance to spend some time together at the 2007 Walker Cup at Royal County Down in Northern Ireland.

Both men were stalwarts for their respective squads although they only squared off once in four matches. Fowler paired with Billy Horschel to beat McIlroy and Jonathan Caldwell, 2 and 1, in a Sunday morning foursomes match.

Now, both 25, they live near each other in Jupiter, Fla., and spend time together often both on and off the golf course.

On Sunday, they’ll be paired together in the last group of the British Open at 9:40 a.m. ET. Although the two were tied for the lead with five holes remaining, McIlroy made eagle at Nos. 16 and 18 and holds a six-shot lead over Fowler.

“I’m looking forward to it tomorrow, it’s going to be a good time,” Fowler said. “We’re good buddies and at the same time we both want to beat up on each other as bad as possible. We’ll have fun throwing shots back and forth.”

McIlroy threw a playful, fashion-related barb toward Fowler regarding his usual choice of Sunday gear.

“I definitely won’t be wearing orange, that’s for sure,” McIlroy said. “But no, Rickie is a good guy … I see him around all the time. It will be a good, comfortable group for both of us."