The Open Championship: Third round update
Ater being forced into a fifth day for only the second time in history, the Open Championship is back in full flow despite the weather still being less than pleasurable.
The penultimate round (three) is underway at St Andrews, and American Dustin Johnson (9/5 favourite), who narrowly missed out to Jordan Spieth at the recent US Open, leads the way on 10 under.
Johnson, runner-up here in 2011, leads by one shot, ahead of Australian Marc Leishman and surprise challenger Danny Willett of England.
After his wind-affected second round, Johnson said: “This morning when we started it was almost impossible, but I managed to hang in there and then when we just went out and restarted it was very tough, but managed to make some good pars and then birdie the last hole. So it was a good way to finish the day.”
There is certainly a strong British contingent near the top of the leaderboard, with other Englishman Eddie Pepperell (-8) and Scottish duo former Open champion Paul Lawrie (-8) and Marc Warren (-7) in contention.
Lawrie (22/1 title chance), who won the Open back in 1999, said following his weather-disrupted second round: “I struggled a wee bit when I went back out and had to hole a couple of decent putts for pars.
“I should’ve birdied 18 really and hit a poor chip. But, apart from that, I played solid and 70 was about right.”
Others in contention for the Open title this year include Zach Johnson (22/1), Jason Day (12/1), Adam Scott (8/1) and Louis Oosthuizen (12/1), who are all on -7 and three behind the leader.
High profile Englishmen still up for the fight are Luke Donald (33/1) and Justin Rose (25/1), who are on -6 and -5 for the tournament respectively.
Spaniard Sergio Garcia (33/1), still after his first Major, and Grand Slam-chasing Spieth (9/1) are both on -5, meanwhile.
Spieth, 21, who has won both the Masters and US Open this year already, was less than happy after his performance, but was still positive. “It was an interesting round that took a lot of time, but it’s nice to look back on Saturday evening and instead of being five shots back with one to go, I’ve still got two full rounds, so anything can happen here,” he said.
“I believe I’m still in contention. I still believe I can win this tournament. I need a really solid round tomorrow, though, because Dustin is not letting up. Dustin is going to shoot a good round tomorrow with less wind and I’m going to need to shoot a great round to really give myself a chance.”
*Please note all odds and scores were at the time of writing*