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Live Reporting

Andy Cryer and Ben Dirs

All times stated are UK

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  1. Post update

    It is absolutely hammering it down in Hoylake now, and I'm sure this is going to cause some controversy - without the two-tee start today, Rory McIlroy would have still been on his front nine, splashing his way through the stair rods. And with that, I'm off.

  2. Post update

    Leader Rory McIlroy talking to BBC One after a 68 gives him a six-shot lead on -16: "Rickie Fowler was getting close to me. I knew if I could hit good drives on 16 and 18 I would have a good chance of birdie, I didn't expect to hit eagles but there you go. It is a good thing I have experienced this before, good and bad. Hopefully some of that experience I can take into tomorrow.

    " I got off the course yesterday and it felt like I was on the course straight away, I didn't have time to think about it or dwell on it."

  3. Post update

    Mark James

    Former Ryder Cup captain on BBC TV

    "Rory has over powered it and taken a lot of bunkers out of play. He has had to hit driver to pretty small targets and that is not easy. He hits it 330 yards and straight down the middle. You can't play chess against someone with a machine gun."

  4. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    Iain Carter

    BBC golf correspondent at Hoylake

    Rory McIlroy shakes hands on the 18th green

    "You can't help but be impressed, can you? This is going to go down as one of the all-time great performances, just like Martin Kaymer at Pinehurst. It's like he's saying: 'Anything you can do, I can do just as well.'"

  5. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    More from Rory McIlroy on BBC One: "I didn't get off to the best of starts yesterday either. The big par save on seven was a big momentum keeper. It has been advantageous to take the driver out on the tees and gives me a big advantage over some of the field.

    "It was a great back nine and I am proud of how I stayed patient. Rickie Fowler and myself have known each other for a long time and are now neighbours in Florida. It will be quite a comfortable grouping for both of us and hopefully we both play well.

    "I will go to the gym after this and then take it easy, have a nice dinner and try and get some sleep."

  6. Get involved


    Charles Nurick on Twitter: Fingers crossed we don't see another Augusta-like meltdown from McIlroy. Think he's mature enough now to see this one out.

    Tom Collins: That might be my last ever bet on Tiger Woods, was such a great player, but he's well past his best now.

  7. I know how leads can "go away", says Rory McIlroy

    Rory McIlroy

    Rory McIlroy says he's not home and dry despite a mammoth six-shot lead: "I won from seven back at Wentworth so I know how leads can go away," he told BBC Radio 5 Live.

    "I feel good, I've been in this position before. Hopefully I'll handle it well. I'll treat it like I did at Congressional (2011 US Open) and how I did at Kiawah Island (2012 US PGA Championship, his second major title). My game plan all week has been to take care of the par fives and I want to do that again tomorrow."

  8. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    Sergio Garcia

    Sergio Garcia talking to BBC One after a 69 takes him to nine under and third place: "I am a little bit disappointed the way I played the last two holes. Other than that I played quite solid for most of the day. I would love to have score a little bit lower but unfortunately not.

    "You never know, you will see what kind of day tomorrow is. It is never easy being in the position of leader, Rory is a great player but you never know, anything can happen.

    "You have to be comfortable with what you do, you can't just attack everything because you are not going to hit good shots. You have to attack where you feel comfortable attacking."

  9. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    Rickie Fowler

    Rickie Fowler talking to BBC One after a 68 leaves him at 10 under for the championship and in second place behind Rory McIlroy:

    "I was really prepared to hit every shot, but made a couple of loose swings off the tee. The loose swings cost me and there is room for improvement on the home stretch.

    "There is a fine line, so much can happen so quickly. I was six back going in to today, if I can get off to a good start and put pressure on, there is still a lot of golf to be played. Being alongside Rory is an advantage tomorrow. We are going to have a good time, if I can put pressure on and make him earn it and see if we can get myself in the mix."

  10. Hope for the others, says Andrew Murray

    Andrew Murray

    Former European Tour player on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Garcia's always got a 65 in him and Dustin has already shot one."

    There you have it lads. Shoot low tomorrow and hope Rory McIlroy has a 2011 Masters-esque collapse.

  11. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "What is exciting about Rory is he chases flags. He didn't need to but he did it in the last few holes. It spread eagles the field. He has got a bit of a cushion."

  12. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    David Leadbetter

    Leading golf coach on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Rory looks like he's floating down the fairway, it's so serene, so easy. When Tiger won at Pebble Beach by 15 shots, I get that kind of feeling here. He's the new Tiger of golf.

    "This course lends itself to his kind of golf. I don't know what the odds on him to not win would be but they must be tremendous. Gary Player used to say there's no safe lead in golf. But he's playing so well you'd have to say the Claret Jug is already in his hands."

  13. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    Mark James

    Former Ryder Cup captain on BBC TV

    "Rory McIlroy looked nervous on the first tee. It took him while to get warmed up, and he didn't start to flow until later, but it shows how much he has got in his tank when he takes that long to get going."

  14. McIlroy leads by six on -16

    I'm told that nobody has ever blown a five-shot lead heading into the final round of the Open and McIlroy would be the first wire-to-wire winner at the Open since Tiger in 2005 and only the seventh ever. A round of 68 on Sunday would break Tiger's Open record of 19 under par, set in 2000.

  15. Post update

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "The two-tee start has worked out well, but it was a big advantage for Rory. He didn't have to wait around, which can be horrible The ingredients were perfect for Rory - and as he walked out on the first tee the rain stopped."

  16. Did you know?

    Greg Norman

    Greg Norman's winning score of 267 at Royal St George's in 1993 is the lowest score shot at The Open. The 'Great White Shark' hit rounds of 66, 68, 69 and 64. A 66 from McIlroy tomorrow would set a new mark.

  17. Get involved


    Nick Comber on Twitter: ‏Too good from Rory. Only one winner of the Open now.

    Few, if any, would disagree. Does anyone stand a chance? Tweet your views using #bbcgolf, via text on 81111 or using our Facebook and Google + pages.

  18. Post update

    That's the biggest lead at the third-round stage since Tiger Woods at St Andrews in 2000. Woods eventually won by eight shots. It would be nice if somebody made a charge tomorrow, at least made things interesting, but with clement weather expected, McIlroy's got this tournament on toast.

  19. Leaderboard


    Selected others: -5: Darren Clarke (NI), Graeme McDowell (NI), Jimmy Walker (USA), Adam Scott (Aus), Justin Rose (Eng); -4: Stephen Gallacher (Sco), David Howell (Eng); -3; Shane Lowry (Ire), Jordan Spieth (USA); -1: Phil Mickelson (USA); +1: Luke Donald (Eng); +2: Paul Casey, Henrik Stenson (Swe); +3: Tiger Woods (USA); +5: Tom Watson (USA)

  20. McIlroy cards 68, leads by six on -16

    McIlroy has had eight single putts in this round... make that nine, he's nailed his eagle chance, his second in three holes. McIlroy finishes with a round of 68 for 16 under overall and a lead of six shots. Bar a total meltdown on day four, Rory's pouched his first Claret Jug. Birdie for Johnson, a round of 71 and tied for third on nine under.

  21. Post update

    Francesco Molinari leaves his eagle effort a couple of feet right but he finishes with a four for a round of 75 and -3 overall. You get the feeling he was a little bit overawed by the monstrous hitting of McIlroy and Johnson...

  22. Post update

    Nick Dougherty

    European Tour player on BBC Radio 5 live

    Rory's played the par threes in under par this week, 2.73 shots average, whereas the field is averaging over par. He's making what are quite tricky par threes here look easy.

  23. Post update

    Huge applause as Rory makes his way to the 18th green, the punters in that horseshoe stand have had some fine entertainment today. Dustin flirted with the bunker front-left but has a long putt from the apron for eagle... cosies it up there, should make birdie...

  24. Post update

    Nick Dougherty

    European Tour player on BBC Radio 5 live

    Great players play great shots and Rory McIlroy is playing one after the other here. That's a flag you shouldn't be able to get anywhere near today.

  25. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    "That is a gem from Rory. They don't come much sweeter than that. I love to watch people doing things well and nobody does it better than him."

  26. McIlroy sets up eagle chance at the last

    Francesco Molinari has had a torrid time today, he's four over through 17. But what a shot this is, a splendid wood into the heart, eagle chance at the last. McIlroy gets inside him, though, and he'll have that 15-footer for an eagle and a six-shot lead. The Northern Irishman has been jauntily magnificent today.

  27. Post update

    John Murray

    BBC Radio 5 live commentator

    Sergio Garcia and Rickie Fowler

    "There's been great interaction between Fowler and Garcia but really to pressure McIlroy they would have needed something absolutely sensational."

  28. Garcia cards 69 for -9

    Ryan Moore for eagle at 18... leaves it just right of the hole and he'll be in for a birdie and a round of 73. Woods makes a birdie at his last, the ninth, and that's a round of 73 for +3 overall. Garcia in for par at the last, a round of 69 and nine under overall. It will be McIlroy and Fowler going out last tomorrow.

  29. Fowler cards 68 for clubhouse lead on -10

    McIlroy at the last and he's absolutely melted that, over the corner and slap-bang in the middle of the fairway. Garcia with his third at 18 and he's left himself with a 20-footer for birdie. Fowler playing from a green-side pot bunker and that's a crackerjack, he'll tap in for birdie, a round of 68 and -10 overall.

  30. Post update

    Garcia pushes his second right of the 18th green, Fowler is also in a spot of bother. Ryan Moore of the United States is the third member of that group and he gets a naughty bounce over a bunker - Moore has a rough ride on the front nine but has settled things down since, he's four under.

  31. Post update

    Tom Watson
  32. Post update

    McIlroy is pretty much where Garcia was on 17 and the result is almost identical, scrambling up the hill and dribbling back again. McIlroy almost holes his recovery putt and it's only one shot gone. Schwartzel taps in for a round of 72, which leaves him where he started, six under. Birdie at the last for 2010 champion Oosthuizen, but he's four over for the day and two under overall...

  33. Post update

    David Leadbetter

    Leading golf coach on BBC Radio 5 live

    "It's been pretty poor golf, whether it's good for friends to play together well that's another thing. It's as flat as a pancake out there, there's no energy."

    David Leadbetter has been following South African trio Charl Schwartzel (-6), Louis Oosthuizen (-2) and George Coetzee (-3), who have all gone backwards today, especially 2010 Open champion Oosthuizen who dropped four shots in four holes on the back nine.

  34. Post update

    Dustin finds the heart of the 17th green with his second, McIlroy has apparently tugged his approach into some cabbage short-left. Garcia steps away from his drive on 18, think that was a spot of insect trouble, before tugging his tee shot left. Fowler just makes the first cut.

  35. Rose 'yet to have his run'

    Justin Rose

    Justin Rose talking to BBC One after a 69 leaves him five under: "Today turned out to be a nice day to play golf. Not much wind and that was my lowest round of the week, although my 70 in the wind yesterday was my best round.

    "I had the chance to go much lower today. I was on the trickier side of the draw but I played some good golf. But maybe haven't had my run yet. I'm probably too far back to win but you never know what the conditions will bring."

  36. Leaders

    -15 McIlroy; -9 Fowler, Garcia; -8 D Johnson, Dubuisson; 7 E Molinari; -6 Manassero, Scott, Furyk, Schwartzel, Karlsson; -5 Clarke, McDowell, Rose, Leishman, Warren, Walker.

    Official Open leaderboard

  37. Garcia & Fowler make bogeys, McIlroy leads by six

    Remember Tiger and that bush on the seventh? He made a triple to fall back to +4. Garcia will have to make do with a bogey at 17, he drops to -9 and six off the lead. Fowler comes up an inch short, he joins Garcia.

  38. Post update

    Good to see Sweden's Robert Karlsson playing with his old elan, he's in the clubhouse on six under after a third-round 70. Fowler's chip on at 17 comes up short and dribbles back down the hump, he's got a rotter for par. Garcia's stab from the rough does much the same, Rory could be looking at a six-shot lead in a minute...

  39. Is Fowler McIlroy's bogey man?

    So we know they go back a while and, as it stands, Rory McIlroy has the edge over Rickie Fowler and the rest of the field on the Hoylake links.

    Something to ponder though: Fowler has two professional wins where, on both occasions, a certain McIlroy was pipped to the title.

    First at the 2011 Korea Open, McIlroy finished second, then at the 2012 Wells Fargo Championship the American defeated the Northern Irishman in a play-off.

  40. Post update

    Frank Nobilo

    Former European Tour golfer and BBC Sport analyst

    Rory McIlroy

    "It was a scratchy start by Rory that seemed to set the tone for his front nine. This was maybe down to the fact that everybody was expecting a weather delay and we didn't have one, so energy levels seemed down a touch.

    "But now it looks like he is making a real shove for home. When Fowler drew level at 12 things could have gone either way, but he then bogeyed 14 while Rory birdied it and momentum has swung. These last holes are going to be pivotal - Rory's finishing is very good and he could open up a big lead here."

  41. Post update

    Fowler with his second into the 17th and he's tugged it left. Garcia went slightly long. Furyk's birdie putt at 18 slips by and he's in with a 71 for six under par. Back on 17, McIlroy has found the fairway with his tee shot. Are we at the 'it's his to lose' stage yet?

  42. Did you know?

    Tiger Woods

    Tom Morris senior's 13-stroke 1862 Open win at St Andrews is still the biggest margin of victory in the history of the tournament. His son, also called Tom Morris, achieved the next two biggest victories, winning by 12 shots in 1870 and by 11 in 1869.

    The biggest win in the modern era was Tiger Woods's eight-stroke triumph in 2005 at St Andrews. Is McIlroy on his way to a bit of history?

  43. McIlroy eagle, leads by five

    Do excuse me, I was all at sea for a moment, distracted by the trials of Woods over on seven. That shot I saw a glimpse of was McIlroy playing his second into the long 16th and our glorious leader has made his lead even more glorious by curling in a long-range eagle putt. That's only the third eagle at the 16th this week and the Northern Irishman now has a five-shot lead over Fowler and Garcia.

    Leaders: -15 McIlroy; -10 Fowler, Garcia; -8 D Johnson, Dubuisson; 7 E Molinari, Schwartzel; -6 Manassero, Scott, Furyk; -5 Clarke, McDowell, Rose, Leishman, Warren, Walker, Karlsson.

    Official Open leaderboard

  44. Post update

    McIlroy with another peach of a tee shot at the short 16th, here's Jim Furyk with one of the shots of the day, hacking out of a green-side bunker at 18. Shots gone for Oosthuizen at 14 and 16, his race is well and truly run...

  45. Post update

    Bernard Gallacher

    Three-time European Ryder Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live

    That's bad. You don't win major championships by making a six on a hole where you should get a four.

    A costly bogey for Rickie Fowler at the 16th possibly?

  46. Post update

    McILROY AND Fowler

    Here's Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy doing battle in the Walker Cup in 2007. In case you were unaware, comedy Tam o' Shanters are required in the biennial event.

  47. Fowler bogey, Garcia birdie

    Fowler lets another one go on 16, McIlroy has got a three-shot lead with a birdie putt coming up. Garcia could do with this going in... lovely weight and pace, the Spaniard gets to 10 under alongside playing partner Fowler.

    Leaders: -13 McIlroy; -10 Fowler, Garcia; -8 D Johnson, Dubuisson; 7 E Molinari, Schwartzel; -6 Manassero, Scott, Furyk; -5 Clarke, McDowell, Rose, Leishman, Warren, Walker, Karlsson.

    Official Open leaderboard

  48. Post update

    Furyk tugs his par putt left at 17, falls to six under and seven off the lead. Garcia chipping on at 16 and he's left himself a seven-footer for birdie. Tiger has got his head in a bush down the seventh, there are about six or seven looking for his ball. He's currently one under through 15, not for much longer...

  49. Mickelson rues 'missed opportunity'

    Defending champion Phil Mickelson believes he missed a good opportunity after finishing his round one under for the day and the championship.

    "We had beautiful scoring conditions, first group off," he said. "If we could have shot seven, eight, nine under par - it probably was out there.

    "It was as easy as I've seen the course play. We could have made some noise. It could have been a lot lower, and I let a lot of shots slide."

  50. Dubuisson has clubhouse lead on -8

    Fowler with his third at 16 after splashing out and he's pushed it right, he'll do well to get up and down from there. Two shots gone for Robert Karlsson at 14 and 16, he falls to -5. Garcia with his second at 16 and that's not bad at all out of the rough, could make birdie. Dubuisson bends in a birdie on 18, the French Ryder Cup shoo-in is in with a round of 68 for eight under overall.

  51. Post update

    Justin Rose
  52. D Johnson birdie

    Jordan Spieth, who rather destroyed his chances yesterday, is putting together a beast of a round today, the 20-year-old American is five under through 14. Dustin bends in a birdie at 15 and is back to -8. Two par-fives to come, he'll fancy nicking a couple more.

    Leaders: -13 McIlroy; -11 Fowler; -9 Garcia; -8 D Johnson; 7 E Molinari, Furyk, Dubuisson, Schwartzel; -6 Manassero; -5 Clarke, McDowell, Rose, Scott, Leishman, Warren, Walker, Karlsson.

    Official Open leaderboard

  53. Post update

    Garcia cocks the hammer and throttles one down the long 16th. Fowler finds sand off the tee before cracking open a sanger, which sends Peter Alliss into rapturous reminiscences about the relative privations of golfers of the past. McIlroy just misses with that long birdie attempt at 15 but pops in for par.

  54. Post update

    Bernard Gallacher

    Three-time European Ryder Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Sergio Garcia really needs to finish these holes off after all these good iron shots. We've been saying that for years now about Sergio."

  55. Fowler the birdie man

    Rickie Fowler

    Who says Americans don't like links golf? Rickie Fowler has carded a remarkable 27 birdies in his last 68 holes of golf in Britain, including a staggering 10 in the final round of the Scottish Open, seven so far today through 14 holes and five in each of his first two rounds at the Open.

  56. E Molinari has clubhouse lead on -7

    Edoardo Molinari in with a 68, he's seven under and tied for fourth. Fowler makes par at the short 15th, stays -11, Garcia makes a fine saver to stay nine under. McIlroy on tee at 15... nothing wrong with that, left himself a 20-footer for birdie. Dubuisson from some muck on 18, he hit his tee shot 400 yards and is on in two.

  57. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    "It is a ridiculous game sometimes. Rory has a couple of birdies, a bit of a struggle and then out of the blue he pops one from 14 yards. Ricky Fowler takes five and it is worth a smile. Well done Rory."

  58. McIlroy birdie

    Dustin on 14, long old birdie putt and he almost nails it, missing by a couple of inches. World number one Adam Scott will be rueing that double at 10, he's birdied 11, 13, 15 and 16 to get back to five under. Furyk for birdie on 15 but that's an iffy stroke, he stays seven under. McIlroy rams home a birdie from miles out on 14, opens up a two-stroke lead.

  59. Manassero cards 68 for -6

    This is Ben Dirs. Garcia on tee at the par-three 15th and he's overcooked that, he'll be putting from the apron. Fowler is back left, no easy birdie chances there. Manassero is in with a splendid 68, the young Italian is back to six under for the week.

  60. Post update

    Rory McIlroy, Sergio Garcia and Rickie Fowler

    And so we have three men - and three big names at that - in the hunt for the Claret Jug. Who is your money on? Over to someone who can nurse you through the drama as Ben Dirs is taking over from me. Thanks for your tweets and messages.

  61. Bogey for Fowler

    A dropped shot for Rickie Fowler on 14. His putt draws a big "ooohh" from those watching on but it doesn't stay on line and the return is a bogey. So far he has had two on every round.

  62. Missed chances

    Schwartzel for birdie on 15...pulls it. David Howell for eagle on 18...pulls it.

    Par and birdie for them respectively. Seven under and four under.

  63. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Unless this sky is nippy it's going to miss its chance to play merry hell with this third round. Fairly bright out here, no wind, no rain, and we'll be done and dusted before tea time. Shame for the fans in a way, but just no way of knowing what might have occurred if the leaders had only just gone out. Still, we're getting a terrific tussle between Rory, Rickie and Sergio. And the various Open Arms are doing a roaring trade."

  64. McDowell ends five under

    Graeme McDowell

    Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell after a 68 left him five under par: "When we started off this morning it was pretty nasty and the front nine didn't really go my way. But thankfully I made some good swings coming down the stretch.

    "Now, conditions are about as good out they have been all day - the clouds have cleared a little bit, the wind is negligible, the greens are soft. You could question the two-tee start, but it's not going to make much difference, except that the sun could be out this evening when no-one is playing golf."

  65. Johnson gets second birdie

    Andrew Cotter

    BBC Sport commentator

    "Finally Dustin Johnson finds his second birdie of the day after he birdied the first. He gets back to seven under."

    Johnson rolls home on the 13th and is five off the pace.

  66. Schwartzel to -7

    Charl Schwartzel is a cat on its ninth life. He was nine under after six holes today and slipped violently back to minus six. The South African hits a scrap-book approach on 14 though and converts from four feet to get back to within five of the lead. Close enough?

  67. Leaderboard


    Selected others: -5: Darren Clarke (NI), Graeme McDowell (NI), Jimmy Walker (USA), Adam Scott (Aus); -4: Justin Rose (Eng), Stephen Gallacher (Sco); -3: David Howell (Eng), -1: Phil Mickelson (USA); +1: Tiger Woods (USA)

  68. Post update

    Nick Dougherty

    European Tour player on BBC Radio 5 live

    Rickie Fowler

    "Rickie Fowler looks about 13 years old now which makes this all the more impressive."

    The 25-year-old had his long, surfer-like hair lobbed off a while back, knocking years off his appearance and, at this rate, shots off his game.

  69. Rough stuff

    Rough. For both leaders off the tee. McIlroy gets a nasty kick off the fringe of the green on 13 and that looks a nasty downhill lie in grass which could hamper his connection with the ball. Fowler meanwhile is one hole further on and his tee shot is way right and in the thick stuff.

    Not to worry. These guys are magicians this week.

  70. Get involved


    Well it's not a day to be out and about and some of you have your feet up watching the action at Hoylake unfold while putting your mind to other things.

    Paul Renwick on Twitter: A Saturday afternoon spent in front of a computer writing a speech has been made bearable by having the golf on in the background.

  71. G-Mac in the clubhouse

    Graeme McDowell
  72. Post update

    Jay Townsend

    Former European Tour golfer on BBC Radio 5 live

    He's kind of treading water today, which is a dangerous position for Rory because Fowler is gaining in momentum with so many birdie holes coming up on the back nine.

  73. McIlroy bogey - Fowler takes share of the lead

    And we do have co-leaders. Rory McIlroy turned club golfer for five minutes as he made the rough his home up the flanks of the par four 12th. The long grass didn't tame him too much and a very makeable par putt looks a certainty but lips out.

    Tomorrow could be a classic if it stays like this. Two young bucks vying for the Open Championship. Rickie Fowler and McIlroy out ahead on 12 under.

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy, Fowler; -9 Garcia; -7 Furyk, Dubuisson, -6 Schwartzel, D Johnson, E Molinari; -5 Clarke, McDowell, Manassero, Leishman, Warren, Walker, Oosthuizen, Karlsson.

    Official Open leaderboard

  74. Dropped shot for Furyk

    Jim Furyk managed 13 holes without a bogey but the 14th comes to bite him. That is the third-hardest hole on the course and Furyk cannot defy the stats - back to seven under.

  75. Nicolas Colsaerts pays tribute to Bob Torrance

    The players are wearing black ribbons today to pay their respects to Bob Torrance, who died on Friday evening. at the age of 82 after a battle with cancer.

    European 2012 Ryder Cup winner Nicolas Colsaerts on Twitter: Sad to hear about the loss of Bob Torrance #icon #golfinglegend

  76. McIlroy finds it tough in the rough

    McIlroy chips out of the rough into the rough on 12 - we will surely have co-leaders shortly. Matteo Manassero - among the leaders for a while yesterday - picks up birdie on 17 and at five under is tied for 10th. Sergio Garcia takes an eight iron off the tee on 13 and sets up a long birdie putt.

  77. Garcia v Fowler

  78. Schwartzel gives one back

    A groan on the 13th green as Charl Schwartzel pushes a par putt. Seven shots behind now looks too much of a mountain to climb for him.

  79. Fowler moves to -12

    McIlroy does that uneasy movement where he twists his body after a dicey shot on the 12th tee box. He watches his ball all the way as it bounces into the rough. "It's fine," says his caddy reassuringly.

    His main rival, Rickie Fowler, marks his ball twice up on the green as he lines it up diligently...never in doubt, crisply into the cup and the lead is one stroke again. Over to you Rory. Blow for blow at the moment.

  80. McIlroy moves to -13

    "Boom", says Ken Brown on BBC One as Rory McIlroy rolls home for birdie. His putt is assured and timely. It moves him two ahead of the red-hot Rickie Fowler who himself has the chance to claim another stroke in the group ahead of McIlroy on the 12th.

    Leaders: -13 McIlroy; -11 Fowler; -9 Garcia; -8 Furyk; -7 Dubuisson, Schwartzel; -6 D Johnson, Karlsson, E Molinari; -5 Clarke, McDowell, Warren, Walker, Oosthuizen.

    Official Open leaderboard

  81. Post update

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "That's a terrific round from Darren Clarke. He was clipping the ball nicely on the range when I saw him earlier this week and he always enjoys links golf."

  82. Clarke's round complete

    Darren Clarke
  83. Birdie for Molinari

    What about Edoardo Molinari? Is six back too far off the lead? A long putt earns him a fifth birdie of the day on 15. He joins Robert Karlsson and Dustin Johnson on six under.

  84. McIlroy responds

    That is six birdies in 11 holes for Rickie Fowler. What must Rory McIlroy be thinking as he sees the American's name creep closer on the giant scoreboards. Fowler tonks his tee shot down the 12th fairway.

    McIlroy responds and looks thrilled with himself as he takes his glove off ready to putt on 11. His shot into the green is carrying some serious back spin and leaves around 10 feet for birdie.

  85. McIlroy's lead down to a stroke

    And Rory's lead is one. Rickie Fowler's fluid putting stroke gets his ball rolling on the 11th green and it only stops when it drops into the cup. A huge put - 30 feet at least.

    Brilliant from Fowler. Is this finally major time for him?

  86. Post update

    Clubhouse leader Keegan Bradley talking on BBC One after finishing round three on three under following a 69:

    "Today is the day to shoot a low number. I am proud of the way I played. The two tee start was a bit strange. I didn't get to bed at a normal time, thinking I would start at noon then I found out I was first off at 5.30am. It was a bit of a shocker late last night. I think a low score is out there. It is a challenging course though."

  87. Post update

    Phil Mickelson
  88. McIlroy saves par

    McIlroy is reminding me of Martin Kaymer at Pinehurst a month ago. On his way to winning the US Open Kaymer consistently got himself out of troublesome spots with good putts, solid bunker play and generally top scrambling. McIlroy lifts out of the bunker on 10 and two putts seal par. On to the next. Still in control.

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -10 Fowler; -9 Garcia; -8 Furyk; -7 Dubuisson, Schwartzel; -6 D Johnson, Karlsson; -5 E Molinari, Clarke, Warren, Walker, Oosthuizen.

    Official Open leaderboard

  89. Post update

    Final hole for Darren Clarke is the par three ninth. His tee shot is right of the green but safe. Dustin Johnson on 10 - needs to end a run of three bogeys and will - a roll with the putter from off the green leaves him eight feet for birdie. Here's McIlroy in that bunker...

    Rory McIlroy
  90. Post update

    Bernard Gallacher

    Three-time European Ryder Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live

    I think Rickie and Sergio are driving each other on here. They like each other and they're almost in competition together out there. It's great to watch.

    Rickie Fowler has just gone -10 after a superb birdie putt at the par-five 10th, two behind McIlroy who is bunkered on the same hole.

  91. McIlroy trouble

    Now then, is this a turning point? Rickie Fowler rolls in for birdie and 10 under. Simple stuff. Now for McIlroy from the middle of the 10th fairway. He crushes it, a rapid swing, but it is bunker bound. The ball teases the masses by circling the bunker, like water going down a plug hole, but the contours will not let McIlroy off and perhaps that takes birdie away on this very welcoming par five.

  92. Post update

    Can Jim Furyk sink a long one for birdie on 12. A simple no. It is a miss-read from the typically consistent American and that leaves a few feet for par.

  93. Garcia for birdie

    Sergio Garcia

    Sergio Garcia leaves himself an outside chance of a birdie on 10. His effort is from around 50 feet, the line looks good, the length looks good, this is in...not quite. A slight break did him but a great touch and par. He stays nine under.

    Victor Dubuisson cannot stay on the mark. He zips one out of the rough to within 15 feet on 13 but his par save is off line.

  94. Stat attack

    Rory McIlroy may be leading the Open but he is only tied 62nd when it comes to hitting fairways from the tee this week, having found just 20. It obviously doesn't mean to much though as the player who has found the most fairways, 32, England's Chris Rodgers, is tied 48th at one over.

  95. Post update

    John Murray

    BBC Radio 5 live commentator

    You can take it from us here that Garcia and Fowler are in contention. There's enough about them.

    John Murray is with Bernard Gallacher following the Spaniard and the American, both at -9 and three behind Rory McIlroy.

  96. Birdies for Dubuisson and Furyk

    I have heard a lot about Victor Dubuisson without really taking much notice. He seems to provide filler at the water cooler lately. "Have you seen this Victor Dubuisson" I've heard many say. Well now I have and I can see he firstly looks like a Disney character and secondly, is very good.

    The Frenchman sinks a 10-foot birdie putt on 12 and it is eight under for him. Jim Furyk moves to the same mark with a three on 11.

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -9 Garcia, Fowler; -8 Dubuisson, Furyk; -7 Schwartzel; -6 D Johnson, Walker, Karlsson; -6 E Molinari, Clarke, Warren, Oosthuizen.

    Official Open leaderboard

  97. McIlroy escapes scare on nine

    Rory McIlroy

    McIlroy has had a touch and shows a touch. His woeful tee shot on nine is not as bad as first fearerd by the time a TV truck moves. The chip to the green is solid and the putt is deadly. Par a welcome result and with the easiest hole on the course to come next, this is looking good for the leader.

    Dustin Johnson simply cannot muster the same powers of escape and yields bogey, as does Schwartzel after his dance with the sand on 10.

  98. Clarke on song

    Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke said on Thursday that conditions were a bit kind, he wanted a test from the elements. The challenge has arrived, to an extent at least, and he has shown why he feels good when the sun hides. A mark of five under for the day through sixteen holes.

  99. Post update

    Royal Liverpool Golf ‏on Twitter: The crowds are getting very vocal in support of the European contingent as Sergio surges and Rory roars

  100. Molinari gets birdie

    Elsewhere on the course Edoardo Molinari still harbours hope. A long putt on 12 is good and drops to take him to six under. Charl Schwartzel has just rammed one into a greenside bunker on 10 - that will be ugly.

  101. Trouble for Rory

    And as Robin tells us of a first rumble of thunder, Rory McIlroy's heart has just delivered a thunuderous beat. He swings on the par three ninth hole and instantly holds his club out - he doesn't like it - and so he shouldn't.

    The ball appears to have struck a TV tower and that will be some up and down for the leader. Go on then Dustin Johnson, put some pressure on. He can't. Pushes his tee shot into grass which needs a cut.

  102. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    Sergio Garcia

    "Enjoying a few early shouts of "C'mon Sergio", uttered in broad scouse, a throwback to that sun splashed and beer fuelled weekend in 2006 when the Spaniard was on the march and the locals were in full voice. Quite a following for Rickie Fowler, too, this time around. Dustin Johnson, however, not doing himself too many favours - if there was a Claret Jug for spitting, the bearded American would have both hands on it. Plus, there's a first rumble of thunder in the air."

  103. McIlroy misses

    Rory McIlroy slightly pushes his birdie putt on eight, he stays on 12 under and three clear of an ever-growing chasing pack. Sergio Garcia makes it back-to-back birdies and nine under on the ninth - a stunning second shot did the hard work for him.

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -9 Garcia, Fowler; -8 Schwartzel; -7 Dubuisson, Furyk, D Johnson; -6 Walker, Karlsson, E Molinari; -5 Clarke, McDowell

    Official Open leaderboard

  104. Thunderstorms on the horizon

    BBC Radio 5 live

    Clare Balding on BBC Radio 5 Live: There's a big sign at the back of the ninth green that says 'Be prepared, thunderstorm possible.'

  105. Day done for Robson

    Starter Ivor Robson talking to BBC Sport about the two-tee start: "It is unique. Most weeks in the European tour we can have it but it is a new one for me with the Open Championship. I don't know what to do now. The last two days the tee times have been 06.24 BST till just past four. I will watch golf I suppose."

  106. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    "It's a rather strange day. We are waiting for the end of the world and it's not happening. But the day is getting done, the golf is good and all in all it's exciting."

  107. Two tees on day three

    So a reminder to any of you just getting involved here that Royal Liverpool has operated two tees today, with players going off one and nine. As a result, we have our leaders halfway through their rounds and there is little, if any opportunity to blink.

    The reason for the double trouble? The threat of thunderstorms late in the day prompted organisers to get things done swiftly. It is the first time in Open history the format has been in place on day three.

  108. Troubles at eight

    8th (Briars)

    Par four, 431 yards

    Briars Hole Hoylake

    A blind tee shot over and out-of-bounds hedge some 190 yards directly in front of you. Miss the trouble and you have relatively straight forward approach to a green protected by four bunkers.

    2006 difficulty rating: 13

    Just three birdies on the eighth so far today as leader Rory McIlroy gets ready to make that four. He has around 15 feet for a three.

  109. Post update

    Thanks Ben, I've brought my abacus as the challengers are lining up, we have two tees in operation and frankly, my head is spinning...

  110. Post update

    Dustin on eight... finds a green-side bunker with his approach. World number one Adam Scott made nine straight pars going out but it's all gone horribly wrong at 10, where he's made double bogey. That's him out of the reckoning. Garcia has pulled out another plum on the ninth, he's stiffed his tee shot to five or six feet. Fowler misses just right... here's Luke Reddy for a bit...

  111. Leaderboard

    Open leaderboard

    Selected others: -6: Jimmy Walker (US), Louis Oosthuizen (SA), Robert Karlsson (Swe); -5: Darren Clarke (NI), Ediardo Molinari; -3: Shane Lowry (Ire), Justin Rose (Eng);

    -1: Adam Scott (Aus), Jordan Spieth (US), Phil Mickelson; Par: Tiger Woods (US), Luke Donald (Eng)

  112. Garcia birdies eight, -8

    McIlroy on eight, going with iron, and that's position A. Darren Clarke is tearing Hoylake a new hole - another birdie at five, he's five under today and for the tournament. Garcia taps in for birdie, the Spaniard moves to eight under and four off the lead.

  113. Struggle for Tom Watson

    Tom Watson

    Things have just taken a turn for the worse for the oldest player left in the field, Tom Watson. The five-time Open champion, 64, takes a seven on the par-five 16, followed by a bogey on 17. Watson is four over through eight, having started his round on the 10th hole.

  114. Post update

    Dustin makes par at seven, stays nine under. Garcia with an absolute peach at eight, leaves himself a few inches for birdie and eight under. Great saver from McIlroy, really ballsy par effort from about 15 feet, he stays -12 and three ahead of the field. Another one gone for Molinari...

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -9 Fowler; -8 D Johnson, Schwartzel; -7 Dubuisson, Furyk, Garcia; -6 Walker, Karlsson, Oosthuizen.

    Official Open leaderboard

  115. Stationary Scott

    Adam Scott

    World number one Adam Scott came into the Open highly fancied to make an impression this week but he is struggling to make a move up the leaderboard today. The Australian is level for the day through nine and remains on three under. He needs to make something happen on the back nine if he is to get himself in a position to challenge on the final day.

  116. Mickelson and Rose down the leaderboard

    Justin Rose

    Defending champion Phil Mickelson and 2013 US Open champion Justin Rose are also struggling to make a charge, both one under for the day. Mickelson has made four birdies but three bogeys leave him on one under through 15, while Rose three under through 10, one under for the day.

  117. Post update

    McIlroy with his third at seven... decent, chance of a par. Johnson takes a Wales-sized divot and also gives himself a chance. Oosthuizen makes a long birdie putt disappear at eight to get back to -6. Fowler on eight, leaves himself a longun for birdie.

  118. Get involved


    In this weather the title could go to anyone, so over to you to see who you're backing to win this thing:

    Malcolm Stevens on Twitter: Jim Furyk to win the Open, I got 40-1 this morning. Rory will bottle it again.

    Ryan Gouge: Rickie Fowler just loves majors, glad I've backed him for a high finish this weekend!

    Not many of you tipping McIlroy to bring the Open championship back to Northern Ireland despite his current three-shot lead...why's that, then?

  119. Fowler bogeys seven, -9

    Fowler with a 12-footer for par at seven... no good, shot gone, back to -9 and tied for second with Dustin Johnson. That, however, could be about to change, with both Johnson and McIlroy gargling medicine back down the seventh fairway. McIlroy hacks out, Johnson flops one forward from a bunker...

  120. Post update

    David Howell

    Former Ryder Cup player Howell is enjoying himself at Hoylake. The 39-year-old's birdie at 10 takes him to four under. Howell won the BMW Championship in 2006 but had to wait until the Alfred Dunhill Links last year for his next victory after a few years in the golfing wilderness.

  121. Post update

    McIlroy on tee at seven, a 480-yard par four, pushes it right. Dustin has gone the other way and found sand, this hole is proving a brute. That said, Garcia almost birdies it up ahead, his chip only needed one more revolution and it was in. Double for Ryan Moore on seven, he found a gorse bush off the tee.

  122. Post update

    Rickie Fowler

    Another birdie for Swindon's David Howell at 10, he's four under. Fowler taking his medicine at seven, hacking out of the rough. Here's Darren Clarke with a long-range birdie attempt at four... that putter of his is hot as hell, he's back to -4 and tied for 14th.


    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -10 Fowler; -9 D Johnson; -8 Schwartzel; -7 Dubuisson, Furyk, Garcia; -6 Walker, Karlsson.

    Official Open leaderboard

  124. Post update

    Francesco Molinari is having a horrible day - his thing is hitting fairways and greens and every time I look up he's up to his knees in sand or weeds. Here he is flopping out at six, although he does make a fine save to stay three under. McIlroy makes his par to stay 12 under, Johnson also makes his to stay nine under.

  125. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    "It is almost the perfect day for golf. You can play with confidence and the scoring for most of the players has been terrific."

  126. Schwartzel bogeys seven, -8

    Schwartzel is making strides but the other two South Africans in his threesome are struggling to shift through the gears - George Coetzee is one over through six, Louis Oosthuizen is two over through six. Shot gone for Schwartzel at seven, back to eight under he goes...

  127. Just how far does Dustin Johnson hit it?

    Jay Townsend

    Former European Tour golfer on BBC Radio 5 live

    Dustin Johnson

    "I did some research on Dustin Johnson and his average second shot on non par-three holes was 159 yards. That's a wedge."

  128. Post update

    Only a par for Dubuisson at eight, stays seven under. The Frenchman has one of those faces that you imagine never to change expression, whether you are firing expletives into this face from a couple of inches or telling him that you love him. McIlroy on the par-three sixth, and he's missed the green. The rain hasn't come in studs up as yet, but we're expecting it at about 1400 BST. As it is, it's muggy out there and closing in...

  129. McIlroy birdies five, -12; Fowler birdies six, -10

    Dustin Johnson on five, from 12 feet... straight right off the club face, stays nine under but that was a missed chance on a par five. McIlroy makes his six-footer for birdie, opens up a three-shot lead... make that two again, Rickie Fowler has nailed another birdie at six...

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -10 Fowler; -9 Schwartzel, D Johnson; -7 Dubuisson, Furyk, Garcia; -6 Walker, Karlsson, Warren.

    Official Open leaderboard

  130. Warren pays tribute to former coach Bob Torrance

    Marc Warren

    Scotland's Marc Warren is handily placed at six under after making the cut at the Open for the first time. The 33-year-old's round of 68 yesterday was tinged with sadness though after learning of the death of his former coach Bob Torrance.

    Torrance had been battling cancer for some time and son Sam, a European Tour veteran and the 2002 Ryder Cup captain, announced he had passed away on Friday evening.

    Warren told the Dundee Courier: "It's a sad day for golf. A legend has passed away. He changed my career massively. Still to this day, and for the rest of my career, his words of wisdom will stay with me.

    "When I first started seeing Bob it was 2002 and I was 80th on the Challenge Tour order of merit, and three months later I'd won twice. I was rookie of the year and I won the World Cup. I might not be playing at this level if it wasn't for him."

  131. Post update

    Whatever happened to the bump and run? Don't think I've seen one all week, it's as endangered as the craft of clog-making. Dubuisson into eight... another crackerjack approach, another chance for a birdie. Defending champion Mickelson made birds at 10, 12 and 13 and is back under par.

  132. Birdie blitz

    Charl Schwartzel

    Charl Schwartzel has now hit more birdies than any other player this week after his latest flurry. The 2011 Masters champion has 16 - two more than Matteo Manassero, Jimmy Walker and Victor Dubuisson.

  133. Post update

    Johnson bending round the corner at five, comes up short but misses the bunker. McIlroy could do with something here, they're massing behind him. He's safely on in two, should make birdie from there. Fowler on tee at the par-three sixth, leaves himself eight feet for birdie. Jimmy Walker bogeyed seven, he's back to -6. Garcia comes up a little short at six.

  134. Get involved


    Adam Hinchliff: Two tee starts should not be allowed in major tournaments. Spectators get to see half the golf and half the golfers for the same price.

    What are your thoughts on two tees in use today to manage the threat of bad weather late today. Is that fair? Tweet #bbcgolf.

  135. Schwartzel birdies six, -9; Fowler birdies five, -9

    Victor Dubuisson

    Victor Dubuisson has come from nowhere this season, but here's a piece the Daily Mail's Derek Lawrenson did on him earlier this year. Sounds like an unusual character, to say the least. Schwartzel drains a longun at six to join Dustin on nine under, two behind McIlroy. Garcia gets back to seven under courtesy of a fine birdie putt on five, that despite an iffy chip. Fowler joins Schwartzel and Dustin on nine under courtesy of a six-footer...

  136. Dubuisson birdies seven, -7

    The new-look Darren Clarke bends in his fourth birdie in a row at two, he's now four under and will be beginning to think unthinkable things. Shane Lowry of Ireland went out in 31, which is the lowest so far this week. Dubuisson for a birdie at seven... AND ANOTHER! The Frenchman is now seven under.

    Leaders: -11 McIlroy; -9 D Johnson; -8 Schwartzel, Fowler; -7 Furyk, Walker, Dubuisson; -6; Garcia, Warren, Karlsson.

    Official Open leaderboard

  137. Race for the Ryder Cup

    Wales's Jamie Donaldson is the only player of the nine currently in an automatic qualifying position for Europe's Ryder Cup in Gleneagles in September who missed the cut at Hoylake. Ian Poulter missed the chance to make up valuable points and could be relying on being a captain's pick - surely shouldn't be a problem given his track record.

    The American team aren't in bad form either, with eight of their current qualifiers also playing at the weekend. Only points leader Bubba Watson has missed out.

  138. Schwartzel birdies five, -8

    Dubuisson is in a raging fit of form at the moment, here he is parachuting in at seven, another birdie chance. McIlroy makes par at four, stays two clear of the field. Schwartzel fires in a longun on five, moves into a share for third with Fowler on eight under.

  139. Karlsson birdies five, -6

    Sweden's Karlsson pours one in from four feet at five to move to -6, Manassero let one go at seven to drop to three under. We have some rain at Hoylake now, the brollies are up. Johnson with a long-range birdie attempt at four, which has yielded a fair few shots today, but he leaves it just right and stays nine under.

  140. Dubuisson birdies six, -6; Warren birdies five, -6

    Victor Dubuisson

    Another birdie for Dubuisson of France at six, he's now six under and five off the lead. Scotland's Marc Warren is also six under after another birdie at five, while Fowler and Garcia missed makeable birdie putts on four...

  141. Post update

    McIlroy with an uphill birdie chance at three, leaves it left, Dustin makes solid par to stay two back. A five-five-five start for Francesco, and he's now two behind brother Edoardo on three under. Francesco leans on his putter and wears the expression of a man who has just opened his takeaway and discovered they forgot to deliver his mutton vindaloo and delivered chicken korma instead. Clarke with his third birdie in a row at the first, moves to -3.

    Leaders: -11 McIlroy; -9 D Johnson; -8 Fowler; -7 Furyk, Walker, Schwartzel; -6; Garcia, Warren, Dubuisson

    Official Open leaderboard

  142. Get involved


    Jot Hughes: Having the start on two tees is sensible; it's nothing to do with handling rain, wind etc. It's lightning that's the issue.

    Edward Corlett: Same course. Same holes. Slighty different order for some. Makes sense to me and probably helpful to spectators too?‏

  143. Post update

    Jimmy Walker

    What a season it has been for Oklahoma's Jimmy Walker. The 35-year-old won his maiden PGA Tour event at the 2013 Open, after nine years and 188 PGA Tour starts. He followed that up with wins at the Sony Open in Hawaii and the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. He leads the FedExCup, a championship trophy for the PGA Tour standings, this year and finished eighth and ninth in the 2014 Masters and US Open respectively.

    Walker is three under through five and is seven under for the championship.

  144. Post update

    Adam Scott, the world number one, has strung together five straight pars but that's not enough, he's rather treading water on three under as others thrash away into the distance. Fowler has a makeable birdie chance to get to within two of McIlroy, the back of Rory's neck will be getting hot as hell...

  145. Post update

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "We are having a temporary lull from the weather and two things have really lifted the players - the lack of wind and the fact that the course has seriously softened up since yesterday afternoon.

    "The iron shots are coming down much more softly and the greens are perfect, sometimes a bit of moisture actually makes them better. For a pro golfer this is absolutely ideal conditions for scoring and they couldn't have had it any better. But as for what this afternoon brings, who knows… "

  146. Schwartzel birdies fifth, -7

    McIlroy into the heart of the third green but Francesco his having a bit of a nightmare, he tugs his approach left. Dustin comes up short, plenty of work to do. Tiger's birdie attempt at 12 stays a shade left, he remains level. Frenchman Dubuisson pours in a birdie on five and gets to five under, former Masters champion Schwartzel birdies four to get to -7.

  147. Walker birdies five, -7

    Jimmy Walker, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour this season, moves to -7 with a long-range birdie putt at five. Birdies for 2011 champion Darren Clarke at 17 and 18, he heads down the front nine two under.

    Leaders: -11 McIlroy; -9 D Johnson; -8 Fowler; -7 Furyk, Walker; -6 Schwartzel, Garcia

    Official Open leaderboard

  148. Post update

    Tiger Woods

    Fowler's birdie putt at three stays a couple of inches left of the cup, he stays eight under. Garcia reads the line but his effort lips out, the Spaniard stays in a tie for fifth. McIlroy is safely away at three, over on 12 Woods gives himself another birdie chance with a lovely wedge in...

  149. Get involved


    The Notorious BJP: Part of playing the Open is dealing with the elements. Hail, wind, rain. 2 tee starts is sanitisation. Rory has had it all his way.

    We are asking you what you think of the use of two tees in round three. In an attempt to get players through the course swiftly, they will be teeing off on one and 10.

  150. Furyk birdies four, -7

    Furyk for birdie on four, makes it, the former US Open champion is now seven under. Dustin Johnson remains nine under after a par at two, McIlroy makes a fine saver from eight feet to retain his two-shot lead. But it's another one gone for Francesco, the Italian drops to four under.

  151. Post update


    Byeong-Hun An is the best scorer of the day, with four birdies from six holes taking the 22-year-old to five under. This is a first major as a professional for the 22-year-old, who became the youngest player to win the US Amateur Championship in 2009 and came through qualifying at Sunningdale to enter this year's Open.

  152. Post update

    Tiger for back-to-back birdies over on 11... makes it from 15 feet, back to level par. Rose lets a shot go on six, drops to three under. Garcia with 196 yards into the third... that's a cutie, another birdie chance. Fowler with 184 yards, almost as good...

  153. Leaderboard

    The Open leaderboard

    Selected others: -5: Francesco Molinari (Ita), Ryan Moore (US), Robert Karlsson (Swe), Edoardo Molinari (Ita), Shane Lowry (Ire), Byeong-Hun An (Kor); -4: Justin Rose (Eng), Louis Oosthuizen (SA); -3: Adam Scott (Aus), David Howell (Eng), Stephen Gallagher;

    Par: Tiger Woods (US); +1: Jordan Spieth (US), Phil Mickelson (US), Tom Watson (US).

    Official Open leaderboard and tee times

  154. Post update

    Swindon's David Howell is three under after birds at four and five, Sweden's Robert Karlsson moves into a tie for eighth on five under after a birdie at three. I think most of us can sympathise with Molinari at the moment - he's being outbombed by Dustin and Rory off the tee while permanently seeming to be 50 yards behind, mucking about in the rough. Scotland's Marc Warren with a crackerjack approach at four, he should get back to five under.

  155. Post update

    The Open

    The Open on Twitter: The European Tour's Mike Stewart came back from holiday to be the 10th tee starter in the rain today. Thanks Mike!

  156. Post update

    McIlroy and Dustin bomb drives down the second, it's going to be a driving contest between those two today. Garcia likes the second - eagle yesterday, birdie today, back to six under. Offaly's Shane Lowry has gone flying out of the blocks as well, birdies at two, three, five and six, he's now five under.

  157. Birdie leader

    Matteo Manassero leads the birdie table with 14 this week. One clear of Charl Schwartzel, Rory McIlroy and Jimmy Walker.

  158. Fowler birdies two, -8

    Garcia with his second into two and it's decent, could get a shot back there. Rose on a charge, he moves to four under courtesy of a snakey left-to-righter on five. Four in a row for Manassero of Italy, he's back to four under through six. Fowler makes another bird at two, he's now three off the lead. The top of the leaderboard is rocking and rolling.

    Leaders: -11 McIlroy; -9 D Johnson; -8 Fowler; -6 Walker, Schwartzel, Furyk

    Official Open leaderboard

  159. McIlroy bogeys first, -11; D Johnson birdies first, -9

    Francesco Molinari lets a shot go at the first, falls to -5. Here's Dustin, and he's only got three feet for a two-shot swing... nailed it, moves to -9 as McIlroy slips to -11. Just, that four-footer dragged its feet.

  160. Get involved


    Calvin Charlton: Tiger Woods will be glad that he is starting on the 10th - has struggled on the 1st!

    John McEnerney: Freaky Friday banished for this week but there is such a thing as a Silly Saturday & McIroy knows about Super Meltdown Sundays! Let's see.

  161. Furyk birdies three, moves to -6

    Iffy moment from McIlroy, almost left his bunker shot in there and he's got a 12-footer for par. Tiger Woods on 10, his first hole, makes birdie to move to +1. Shot gone for McIlroy, Furyk has drained a birdie putt on three, he's now six under.

  162. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Miles to go yet, of course, but just starting to get that feeling there is some sort of destiny at play here for Rory McIlroy this week. A final lingering handshake and firm eye contact with coach Michael Bannon before he sets off for the first tee. Chomping gum in the manner of Tiger Woods as the clock ticks towards the off, McIlroy stares ahead impassively, presumably his "inner peace" kicking in.

    "It occurs to me how Woods spoke earlier this week of the serenity he felt at Hoylake in 2006. You just wonder if McIlroy is deliberately trying to imitate the habits of his boyhood idol, or if the great ones are all made of the same stuff. Under a dry sky, he belts his drive away and the great circus leaps into gear once again. "Let the races begin," smiles a snapper scurrying past."

  163. Post update

    Young Byeong-Hun

    Young Byeong-Hun has picked up another birdie, he's five under - shots to be made out there. Garcia on two, he made eagle here yesterday, chucking it in from the fairway. Not a good start from Oosthuizen, he's out of the traps with back-to-back bogeys - shots to be lost out there...

  164. Post update

    Here's Francesco Molinari, whose tee shot at the first has been gobbled up quite cruelly by McIlroy and Johnson. The Italian will be thumping one in with a six iron out of the rough... tugs it left. What news of South Korea's An Byeong-Hun, I hear you cry - birdies at one, three and five, he's five under. McIlroy has found a trap with his approach at one, Dustin stiffs a sand wedge to within six feet - chance to nick a couple of shots here...

  165. Walker -6, Fowler -7, Garcia -5

    Many thanks Andy, this is Ben Dirs. Jimmy Walker with back-to-back birdies at two and three to get to -6, Rickie Fowler birdies the first to moves to -7. Garcia, however, makes five after his travails in the sand, the Spaniard falls to -5 and tied for seventh.

    Leaders: -12 McIlroy; -8 D Johnson; -7 Fowler; -6 Walker, Schwartzel, F Molinari

  166. Where can they catch McIlroy?

    In a nutshell, the par fives. Royal Hoylake boasts four of them and nailing them is as vital as having a putter in your bag if you are to succeed here.

    Holes five, 10, 15 and 18 have served up 473 of the 944 birdies this week, not to mention 27 eagles.

  167. Post update

    This doesn't feel right does it? The leaders teeing off just past 11:00 BST on a Saturday of a major. This two-tee start will hopefully get everyone through before the storms though.

    One question it does pose, is have they cloned starter Ivor Robson for those starting on 10? With that, I'll pass you on to Ben Dirs as I take an early break. See you later.

  168. Post update

    Overnight leader Rory McIlroy, who tees off at 1101: "I feel like I'm ready for whatever conditions come because I've practised the last few weeks in links-type conditions. I've practiced the shots I might need in windy conditions or wet conditions.

    "Having that four-shot lead makes it tougher for the guys to catch you. But golf is a very fickle game. Hopefully I can just keep up the solid play for another couple of days."

    Rory McIlroy
  169. McIlroy underway

    Leader Rory McIlroy (-12) tees off and nails it. Nerves? What nerves?

  170. Garcia in bunker trouble

    Nightmare start for Sergio Garcia (-6) as finds his second bunker on the first. He is there for three.

  171. Bogey for Oosthuizen

    Louis Oosthuizen pays the price for finding the thick rough off the tee on one as he misses a 10 foot putt for par. Back to five under for the South African.

  172. McIlroy expectation

    Daily Mail back page

    Rory McIlroy dominates the sport sections of today's papers and while the Daily Mail back page predicts weather would play a part at Hoylake, so far conditions look kind and 17 players are under par so far.

  173. Post update

    Rory McIlroy, dressed in a light blue polo shirt and cap, strides towards the first tee. The Northern Irishman has a very bouncy walk and looks full of confidence as he is about get his round underway. Why wouldn't he? Her has a four-stroke lead after two almost flawless rounds of golf.

    He is greeted with huge cheers from the galleries.

  174. Fowler feeling confident

    Rickie Fowler

    Rickie Fowler, currently six under, spoke to BBC One on the practice area: "Playing in the rain is never fun in any way. It's not too bad right now and it has a chance to clear up by this afternoon.

    "The two tee starts have moved the tee time up a bit but I'm still going off number one and around the leaders group.

    "I feel really confident here. It's been good for me in the majors this year so I'm looking forward to putting a solid round together."

    The American teed off at 10:50 BST.

  175. Post update

    Brilliant from Adam Scott (-3) on three as he sets up a birdie chance. Justin Rose rolls a putt for birdie just past the hole on four and stays at three under.

  176. Coetzee on first hole

    George Coetzee

    Commentator Peter Alliss says: "George has a comfortable build. Built for comfort. Not speed."

  177. Garcia gets his round under way

    Now, can this week be his time? Sergio Garcia tees off on one at six under and in with a shout of finally breaking his major duck.

    He has been close before. Not a great start as he finds the rough and just keeps his fingers crossed he gets a favourable lie. Playing partner Rickie Fowler (-6) has no such trouble, nor does Ryan Moore (-6).

  178. Post update

    Edoardo Molinari (-5) in safely for par on three after back-to-back birdies. Justin Rose (-3) sets up another chance for birdie on four.

  179. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Rory McIlroy firing red-headed drivers into the gun-metal sky. Not the actual driver, just lots of balls. The whip crack of each one ricocheting down the range. You can tell he's hitting it well when he does that little shuffle with his feet after the follow through.

    "When he's had enough he strides down the range, eyes forward even when someone shouts out some encouragement. He does allow himself a quick eyes left at boyhood idol Tiger Woods and exchanges a quick word with Woods's caddie Joe LaCava. Only Woods left."

  180. Post update

    Up and down start for Matteo Manassero as he makes a second birdie in a row on four. The Italian started with back-to-back bogeys but returns to where he started today, two under.

  181. Poor start for Bjorn

    They arrive like buses. Denmark's Thomas Bjorn goes the entire back nine without a bogey on Friday. He's got two from two holes on Saturday. Tidy it up Thomas.

  182. Get involved


    Paul Wake: Jimmy Walker is Davis Love III in disguise!!

    Paddy Emmerson: If there is going to be a remake of the 3 musketeer's, surely you would cast Victor Dubuisson. A living caricature of a musketeer.

    It seems a few of you are golfing on a mission to find golfing lookalikes.

  183. Post update

    Jimmy Walker lands his approach pin high on on the second as he looks good for birdie following a par save on the first. Walker should move to five under.

  184. Birdie for Rose

    Justin Rose birdies three from about 10 feet. The Englishman moves to three under.

    A trio of South Africans Louis Oosthuizen (-6), Charl Shwartzel (-6), and George Coetzee (-5) are playing together and underway on one. Oosthuizen finds the deep rough, Coetzee the bunker and Schwartzel shows them how it is done straight down the fairway.

  185. In from the bunker

    Get in! Edoardo Molinari shows his genius from the bunker as he chips in from the bunker on two for successive birdies. Up to four under for the Italian.

  186. Post update

    The bunker on one is finding a few victims today as Robert Karlsson (-4) lands in the sand with his second.

  187. Post update

    Keegan Bradley up to three under with two birdies in the first six holes, while Stephen Gallacher gets a shot back at three to return to two under.

  188. Where could McIlroy blow up?

    The stumbling blocks:

    Hole 2: Par four averaging 4.35 shots has claimed 108 bogeys this week and 12 double bogeys or worse.

    Hole 7: The hardest hole on the course takes around 4.4 blows to get through on average. Just 13 of the 924 birdies across the course this week have come on this drag.

  189. Post update

    Jimmy Walker saves par brilliantly. His bunker shot isn't great on one but he putts into the middle of the hole from 20 feet to stay at four under.

  190. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "An early putt and some vigorous gum chewing for Tiger Woods. He has a good laugh about something with Jimmy Walker and then sweeps off to the front of the clubhouse to get a courtesy car over the road to the range. Setting up between Rickie Fowler and Sergio Garcia, he begins with a few gentle wedges. Current coach Sean Foley is manning the umbrella, former guru Butch Harmon yards away with Fowler and Dustin Johnson. Rory McIlroy out on the far left with coach Michael Bannon. Still raining."

  191. Post update

    We are already into the contenders. Jim Furyk (-5), Robert Karlsson (-4) and Marc Warren (-5) are underway on one. Karlsson away safely, Warren into the galleries and Furyk looks in a horrible position off the fairway.

  192. Back-to-back birdies for Cabrera

    Back-to-back birdies at the start for Angel Cabrera, on 10 and 11, and he is now in the red for the championship. If only his first day hadn't been such a horror show, he would have been well in this.

  193. Post update

    Good start Byeong-Hun An as he moves to three under with a second birdie of the day at three.