Scott not fooled by Open advantage
22 Jul 2012 09:21:04
A cautious Adam Scott has tried to play down the significance of his four-shot lead going into the final round of the British Open.
Australian Scott posted to a two-under-par third round of 68 on Saturday to open up a healthy advantage over 2010 US Open winner Graeme McDowell and American Brandt Snedeker at Royal Lytham and St Annes.
World number four Tiger Woods, seeking his 15th major championship victory, sits five strokes off the lead in outright fourth.
And Scott has no illusions about the pedigree of his likely challengers during Sunday's deciding round.
"A four-shot lead doesn't seem to be very much this year on any golf tournament that I've watched," he said.
"The good part is if I play a solid round of golf tomorrow, it will be very hard for the others to beat me, and that's all I'm thinking about.
"I think no matter what, the course is a big challenge out here.
"But it's a great leaderboard, too. It depends. We didn't see anyone go really low today, so that was kind of slightly comforting to me.
"But if I can play well, it will be hard for someone to shoot 63 or 64. Just depends how they set it up. They put the pins in tough spots the last two days."
The field has benefited from benign conditions throughout the first three days of the tournament, with little wind and receptive greens allowing some good scores to be posted.
But winds of 20 miles per hour, gusting up to 30mph, are forecast for day four, and Scott is braced for a far sterner test of his course management as he seeks to claim his first major title.
"It's going to be different conditions than we've faced for the last three days, that's for sure," Scott said.
"It's been quite incredible, really, how still it's been here for three days.
"But I think I'll just have to draw back on when I was here last Friday, Saturday and Sunday playing in some windy conditions. Even Monday, Tuesday, as well, to kind of remember the clubs and the shots and how much the wind affects the ball.
"I might have to make some changes in the style of shots we're hitting. And certainly if it's good weather, it will firm the course up. The course was firmer again today, so the ball will get running. But just little adjustments you'll have to make.
"But I think with the way I prepared at the start of the week, I said I felt I had a pretty good understanding of how this golf course can be played in all conditions."