The British Open is set to begin with the opening round commencing on Thursday morning at Royal St. George's Golf Club.

In the United States, the British Open will air on ESPN at 4 a.m. eastern on Thursday, and will have that start time each of the four days. ESPN3.com will have all online coverage. 

In the UK, the BBC will have exclusive coverage on television and the Internet for the European English-speaking audience.

Tiger Woods will not participate in the tournament due to an injury. Rory McIlroy, winner of the 2011 U.S. Open, will be among the favorites to win the tournament, along with Phil Mickelson, Luke Donald, and Lee Westwood.

Jerry Kelly, Nathan Green and Danny Willett are the first group to tee off.

Louis Oosthuizen, a rather low-profile golfer, is the reigning champion. He went into last year's tournament ranked 54th in the world.