Louis Oosthuizen set the lowest 36-hole total in Open Championship history on Friday, but more records could tumble this weekend at a sun-drenched Sandwich as several of the world's elite golfers chase the Claret Jug in the glorious Kent weather.
Oosthuizen dropped his first and only shot at the par-three 16th hole on Friday evening with rounds of 64 and 65 seeing him hold a two-shot lead over 2020 US PGA champion Collin Morikawa on 11 under at the halfway stage of the season's final major.
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With Royal St George's ripe for birdies in such benign, sunny conditions bereft of strong winds and rain, it is not difficult to envisage more records tumbling over the next two days at the par-70 course.
2014 Open winner Rory McIlroy moved from level par to four under after the first nine holes of his third round on Saturday to illustrate the possibilities for the later starters.
Defending champion Shane Lowry – who is still in contention at four under ahead of the third round – holds the record total for 54 holes of 197 set two years ago at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland, but 2010 winner Oosthuizen could beat that number with a round of 67 on Saturday.
Henrik Stenson's 20-under total of 264 in his victory at Royal Troon in 2016 also appears to be under threat with Oostuizen needing two rounds of 67 to usurp the Swede, but others could emerge from the chasing pack to threaten those landmarks with 2017 champion Jordan Spieth only three off top spot on eight under.

Rory McIlroy enjoys the sun at Sandwich.

Image credit: Eurosport

Branden Grace's major low of 62 in the third round at Royal Birkdale four years ago would appear to be tangible while the course record of 63 – set by Nick Faldo and matched by Payne Stewart at the 122nd Open in 1993 – is also an obvious target over the closing 36 holes.
Oosthuizen and Open debutant Morikawa head out in the heat at 3:55pm (BST) in the final group on Saturday, but Dustin Johnson (seven under), US Open champion Jon Rahm (five under) and four-times major winner Brooks Koepka (five under) are elite names with high hopes of chasing down the leaders.

Open leaderboard

  • -11 L Oosthuizen (SA)
  • -9 C Morikawa (US)
  • -8 J Spieth (US)
  • -7 D Frittelli (SA)
  • -7 D Johnson (US)
  • -7 S Scheffler (US)

The Open Championship: Saturday's 3rd round tee times (BST)

(*denotes amateur)
  • 09:20 Yuxin Lin (Chn)*,
  • 09:30 Talor Gooch (US), Bryson DeChambeau (US)
  • 09:40 Richard Mansell (Eng), Bernd Wiesberger (Aut)
  • 09:50 Marcus Armitage (Eng), JC Ritchie (SA)
  • 10:00 Ryosuke Kinoshinta (Jpn), Poom Saksansin (Tha)
  • 10:10 Rickie Fowler (US), Antoine Rozner (Fra)
  • 10:20 Brendan Steele (US), Robert MacIntyre (Sco)
  • 10:30 Sam Burns (US), Harris English (US)
  • 10:40 Abraham Ancer (Mex), Jason Kokrak (US)
  • 10:50 Christiaan Bezuidenhout (SA), Sam Horsfield (Eng)
  • 11:05 Rory McIlroy (NI), Richard Bland (Eng)
  • 11:15 Benjamin Hebert (Fra), Xander Schauffele (US)
  • 11:25 Padraig Harrington (Ire), Matthew Fitzpatrick (Eng)
  • 11:35 Kevin Streelman (US), Lanto Griffin (US)
  • 11:45 Viktor Hovland (Nor), Joaquin Niemann (Chi)
  • 11:55 Max Homa (US), Chan Kim (US)
  • 12:05 Justin Thomas (US), Adam Scott (Aus)
  • 12:15 Billy Horschel (US), Kevin Kisner (US)
  • 12:25 Jazz Janewattananond (Tha), Mattias Schmid (Ger)*
  • 12:35 Chez Reavie (US), Aaron Rai (Eng)
  • 12:50 Jonathan Thomson (Eng), Lee Westwood (Eng)
  • 13:00 Ian Poulter (Eng), Jack Senior (Eng)
  • 13:10 Webb Simpson (US), Tommy Fleetwood (Eng)
  • 13:20 Johannes Veerman (US), Matt Wallace (Eng)
  • 13:30 Sergio Garcia (Spa), Byeong Hun An (S Kor)
  • 13:40 Joel Dahmen (US), Justin Rose (Eng)
  • 13:50 Dean Burmester (SA), Daniel Berger (US)
  • 14:00 Shane Lowry (Ire), Brandt Snedeker (US)
  • 14:10 Danny Willett (Eng), Brian Harman (US)
  • 14:20 Corey Conners (Can), Cameron Smith (Aus)
  • 14:35 Tony Finau (US), Ryan Fox (NZ)
  • 14:45 Jon Rahm (Spa), Cameron Tringale (US)
  • 14:55 Brooks Koepka (US), Mackenzie Hughes (Can)
  • 15:05 Justin Harding (SA), Paul Casey (Eng)
  • 15:15 Marcel Siem (Ger), Andy Sullivan (Eng)
  • 15:25 Daniel Van Tonder (SA), Emiliano Grillo (Arg)
  • 15:35 Dustin Johnson (US), Scottie Scheffler (US)
  • 15:45 Jordan Spieth (US), Dylan Frittelli (SA)
  • 15:55 Louis Oosthuizen (SA), Collin Morikawa (US)
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