Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell will practice in separate groups at Gleneagles today as a renewed Ryder Cup partnership looks increasingly unlikely

Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell will practice in separate groups at Gleneagles today with a renewed Ryder Cup partnership looking increasingly unlikely.

McIlroy will take to the course with Martin Kaymer and Sergio Garcia, while McDowell will practice with Henrik Stenson and Victor Dubuisson.

European captain Paul McGinley insists splitting the two up, if he elects to do so, would have nothing to do with a reported falling out between the Northern Irish duo following McIlroy’s change of management last year.

“Both of them have assured me all along that there are no issues and that’s the way I’ve always seen it,” said McGinley.

“Whether they come together or not is another story.

“Three of four months ago I had a very strong view that they would have been, but the more I look at the statistics and the more I look at the different value I have with them, I’m thinking there may be value in not doing it.”

McIlroy and McDowell have played six Ryder Cup matches together and returned only 2.5 points.

Elsewhere, Ian Poulter will practice with Justin Rose and Stephen Gallacher, and Thomas Bjorn will hone his game alongside Lee Westwood and Jamie Donaldson.

USA Captain Tom Watson has sent his side out in fourballs, as follows:

Matt Kuchar/Jordan Spieth/Webb Simpson/Bubba Watson

Jim Furyk/Zach Johnson/Hunter Mahan/Patrick Reed

Keegan Bradley/Rickie Fowler/Phil Mickelson/Jimmy Walker