Oosthuizen sets 36-hole record for Open lead
Collin Morikawa set the early clubhouse lead at 9-under but overnight leader Louis Oosthuizen was able to claw his way back to the top of the leaderboard with a sensational 65 to take a two-shot lead into the weekend.
Oosthuizen was slow out of the gate again with consecutive pars before a birdie at the 7th and a birdie-birdie-eagle run from the 12th saw him finish at 11-under to set a new record 36-hole low of 129 besting the 130 mark set by Brandt Snedeker and Nick Faldo.
“I only heard that when I walked in, so I wasn’t aware of what it even was before. To have any record at the Open or part of any record at the Open is always very special,” said Oosthuizen.
“Today we got really — I would say lucky sort of the last nine holes. It was as good a weather as you can get playing this golf course. All of us took advantage of that. I think in our three-ball we had a 64 and two 65s, which you don’t really see around a links golf course.”
Louis Oosthuizen (Credit: R&A)
2017 Open champion Jordan Spieth also kept his hopes alive with 3-under 67 leaving him at 8-under and outright third place.
World No.1 Dustin Johnson moved up 15 places with a superb 5-under 65, which included two bogeys, which sees him in a three-way tie for 4th place and four shots off the pace.
Four-time major champion, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm both salvaged some pride returning rounds of 66 and 64 respectively to sit on 5-under and will need something special on Saturday.
“There is always a chance. Tomorrow is the most important day obviously right now. If I can put another solid round like I did today, post a good number, and hope that the leaders don’t go too low, I think that’s the job,” said Rahm of his chances of back-to-back majors.
Out of 11 Australians in the field only two players made the cut with Cameron Smith cementing his place with a gutsy 67 to share 17th place on 4-under.
Adam Scott played himself back into the tournament with a 4-under 66 to close out Friday in equal 40th at 1-under.
Marc Leishman (142), Matt Jones (143), Min Woo Lee (143), Lucas Herbert (143), Jason Scrivener (144), Jason Day (145), Brad Kennedy (145), Aaron Pike (149) and Deyen Lawson (157).