Retief Goosen wasn't a happy camper when he finished off his round of 72 on Saturday. And who could blame him?
The South African had climbed into the top-five on the leaderboard at 7 under with a birdie at the par-5 14th hole. But Goosen gave it back -- and then some -- with a bogey and a double bogey in his next three holes. He'll start the final round a distant 10 strokes off the pace, as a result.
"It was a bit of a disappointing finish," the quiet South African said. "I would have liked to have get it going a little bit in the last few holes, but finished poorly unfortunately. Pretty much out of it now, so hopefully just get a good round in tomorrow and try and finish up in the top five."
There's another South African at the top of the leaderboard in Louis Oosthuizen. Goosen, a two-time U.S. Open champ, is 14 years his senior but he has seen Oosthuizen play enough that he knows the 27-year-old has got all the tools.
"Louis has actually been playing some really good golf this year," Goosen said. "He's probably had a chance to win four or five European Tour events this year, and he just failed in that last round or somebody else shot a great round. He has one of the best golf swings on Tour, and he's a good wind player, grew up in an area that's very windy. ...
"The guy has got a really solid head on him. He's very focused, very nice guy, one of the nicest guys on Tour, and like I say, tomorrow, yeah, it's going to be tough, but you know, you've got to get out there and do it. Somebody has to do it." – Helen Ross
Martin Kaymer has put together three steady rounds at the Old Course this week. He has yet to shoot above par in any round and finished 54 holes at 8 under, which places him solo third.
"Obviously I played very good golf today, like the last two days already," Kaymer said. "I gave myself a lot of good birdie chances. Made one mistake today on No. 9, that bogey. The other bogey that kind of happened, the three-putt, but on No. 9 it was only from six, seven feet, so I had a very good birdie chance and ended up with a bogey.
"But then was fighting back with a birdie on 10 and 12. So 68 under those conditions, I'm very happy."
A year ago, Kaymer came to Turnberry among the favorites after winning the previous two European Tour events – and ended up in a tie for 34th. The 25-year-old German captured the season-opener this year and has four other top-10s but a missed cut at Loch Lomond last week gave him some extra time to prepare.
"Last year of course I was very tired, so last week was -- on one hand it was not so good that I missed the cut, on the other hand it was very good for me to prepare for the British Open, and I feel definitely very ready to play another good round tomorrow," Kaymer said.
"Last year coming from two big wins, of course I was more tired than now, but I can see myself playing well again tomorrow, and yeah, we will see where I'm finishing."
Kaymer tied for eighth at the U.S. Open last month, and he has another chance at major glory on Sunday. He's six shots behind the leader, Louis Oosthuizen, although he only has two players in front of him.
"I think Louis Oosthuizen and Paul Casey, they played very solid golf the last couple days, and too far away would be probably seven, eight shots," Kaymer said. "I don't really see myself shooting a 63 under those conditions, and I'm not expecting them to shoot 73 or 74 tomorrow. So that is what I would explain as a goal, which is not really realistic to do." – Helen Ross
Jin Jeong continues to hang in there during the third round of the British Open. The 20-year-old is 1 over for the day through 12 holes, but he is currently tied for ninth at 5 under for the tournament. To put his performance in perspective consider these items:
Three amateurs have won the British Open:
Bobby Jones (3) 1926, 1927/St. Andrews, 1930
Harold Hilton (2) 1892, 1897
John Ball Jr. (1) 1890
The most recent top-10 finish by an amateur at the British Open was Chris Wood in 2008 at Royal Birkdale, finishing fifth.
Lowest total by an amateur at the British Open:
281 Iain Pyman 1993
281 Tiger Woods 1996
282 Justin Rose 1998
282 Matteo Manassero 2009
283 Guy Wolstenholme 1960 (St. Andrews)
283 Lloyd Saltman 2005 (St. Andrews)
Alejandro Canizares and amateur Jin Jeong are hoping to become the first player to win the British Open in his debut since Ben Curtis in 2003 and the 10th overall. Four players have performed the feat at St. Andrews:
Willie Park, Prestwick, 1860
Tom Kidd, St Andrews, 1873
Mungo Park, Musselburgh, 1874
Jock Hutchison, St Andrews, 1921
Denny Shute, St Andrews, 1933
Ben Hogan, Carnoustie, 1953
Tony Lema, St Andrews, 1964
Tom Watson, Carnoustie, 1975
Ben Curtis, Royal St. George’s, 2003