The top three in the world ranking are battling it out over the back nine at the Old Course with Tiger Woods still in the lead by three shots, with David Duval putting up the most significant challenge to his domination.
Duval fired two birdies in the first three holes and Woods fired back with one of his own at the fourth.
Both players made a hash of the reachable par five fifth with Woods missing the green with a wedge for his second shot, only just managing a three putt from the bottom of the slope short of the green.
Duval three putted for par after playing the hole sensibly, but he is mounting a challenge with two more birdies at the 6th and 7th holes.
Ernie Els has just dropped back to 11-under after a three-putt on the 11th green. Els turned in four under but did not pick up shots at the easy 9th and 10th holes and he had his work cut out down the back nine but after finding a deep gorse bush from the tee on the 12th hole, Els challenge is over.
European hopes will rest with Dane Thomas Bjorn who is battling his way around, dropping two shots early on at the 4th and 5th but getting them back with birdies at the next two holes.
And with a birdie at the 9th, Bjorn turned in 34 and is currently five behind.
We have a tournament on here with Duval out-playing Woods so far…but there is a long way to go…more later…