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Third round golf leaderboard as Tommy Fleetwood chases Brian Harman

American Brian Harman responded to missing the cut in the Masters in April by returning to his farm in Georgia and killing a pig and a turkey. Three months later, the left-hander carved out a commanding five-shot lead over home favorite Tommy Fleetwood at the halfway stage of the 151st Open Championship at Royal Liverpool.

Harman carded four birdies in a row on the front nine and holed from 15 feet for an eagle on the 18th to complete a flawless second round of 65 and post a 10-under-par halfway total of 132. That matched those recorded at Hoylake by Rory McIlroy in 2014 and Tiger Woods in 2006, although both men were 12-under on their way to lifting the Claret Jug as the course was a par-7 2 at the time.

It also made Harman the first player to lead the Open by five shots after 36 holes since Louis Oosthuizen in 2010, the South African going on to win by seven at St Andrews.

Fleetwood, who must have been taken back to start his second round so far behind after sharing the overnight lead, closed to within four when he birdied the 14th and 15th, but dropped a shot on the next and eventually signed for a hard-fought 71. That at least got the 32-year-old from Southport into the final group with Harman for Saturday’s third round, with Austria’s Sepp Straka a shot behind Fleetwood following a brilliant 67 which included six birdies dies and a bogey in his last seven holes.

Follow live coverage from the third round of the 151st Open Championship at Hoylake below:

The Open Championship 2023 – live updates from Hoylake

Patient Tommy Fleetwood prepared to go on a Harman hunt for Open glory

10:31 am , Jack Rathborn

Winning your first major is rarely easy and Tommy Fleetwood’s path to glory at the Open Championship this week certainly looks more complicated on Saturday morning than it did 24 hours earlier.

When he went to bed on Thursday evening, Fleetwood was co-leader of the tournament having shot a thoroughly professional five-under-par round of 66. He was top of the leaderboard alongside a South African amateur (Christo Lamprecht) and an Argentine without a top-10 finish in his major career (Emiliano Grillo), who would both inevitably fade.

Yet by the time the Englishman teed off for his second round on Friday afternoon, he was five strokes off the lead. Brian Harman – a 36-year-old from Georgia, USA – had torn up Hoylake with a brilliant 65 to climb to 10-under-par on a morning where scoring wasn’t even particularly low.

Patient Tommy Fleetwood prepared to go on a Harman hunt for Open glory