Rory McIlroy took a six shot lead after posting a 4-under 68 on Saturday at the 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool.
“I feel like today my patience was rewarded,” said the leader. “I didn’t get off to the best of starts. I wasn’t able to take a few birdie chances around the turn and then dropped a shot at the 12th but the finish speaks for itself.
“I feel very comfortable. I was in here last night talking about being comfortable. This is the third night in a row I will sleep on the lead and I’m still comfortable.
“It helps that I’ve been in this position before and have been able to convert. But I’m not going to take anything for granted because I have won from seven back this year (at the BMW PGA Championship). I have been on the right side of it and the wrong side of it. A lot can happen. You can’t let yourself think about winning. You’ve got to stay in the present and that’s what I’m going to try to do for 18 holes tomorrow.”
The 25-year-old from Northern Ireland will have Rickie Fowler, Sergio Garcia and Dustin Johnson chasing him on Sunday, but no one has ever lost a six-shot lead in the 121 years that The Open has been contested over 72 holes.
“It’s going to be difficult,” Garcia said. “But we’ll give it a shot.”