It took time but suddenly the Big Names have moved into contention. With just 18 holes to go at Torrey Pines some of the world’s best are lurking with intent after an absorbing third round on Saturday.
Louis Oosthuizen is among the leading trio who head into the the final round on five-under. An eagle on the 18th last night moved the South African with the smooth swing to the top of the leaderboard where he keeps unheralded Mackenzie Hughes and Russell Henley company. Oosthuizen has never won in the USA and has been waiting for his second major for 11 years now. He is the man to catch.
Lying in wait ready to pounce are a host of major winners not far back who will fancy their chances if they can keep the bogeys off their cards.
Rory Mcilroy shot a four-under 67 on Saturday. He looked in control and speaking last night said he fancies he is chances today
“I am happy with how I played. There weren’t as many black numbers today which is really nice. I started solidly and played so well tee-to-green until the 15th. It’s the best I’ve played all week,” he commented.
“It would mean an awful lot, I feel good and I’ve given myself a chance. It seems a while since I’ve had a chance to win a major, my game feels good.”
McIlroy will tee it up on three-under which is the same score as the defending champion Bryson DeChambeau. The American made history on Saturday shooting his first ever bogey-free round at a major. His blemish-free 68 was a impressive as it was ominous and he too his confident heading into the final round.
“You’ve got to be really patient out here at these majors,” DeChambeau said. “It’s something that is not easy to do. I feel like I’m starting to understand major championship golf and how to play it and how to go about managing my game, my attitude and just my patience level. If I can continue to do that tomorrow, I think I’ll have a good chance.”
That big-name duo aren’t the only heralded names within striking distance of Oosthuizen and Co.
Jon Rahm, Matthew Wolff, Dustin Johnson, Collin Morikawa and Xander Schauffele are all within four-shots of the five-under lead.
Oosthuizen said of Torrey Pines: “It’s just a tough, old-fashioned golf course. You’re going to have nerves. You’re going to feel it. It’s about how you’re going to handle it. It’s a golf course where anything can happen.”
Stay here to find out what does happen.