Live Blog Saturday, Open Championship

openlogo.jpgAll times Pacific Standard Time...refresh page to update. 

6:11 - Scott and Jimenez tee off on #1 and I just realized the R&A forgot to hang those gaudy Lexus signs all around the tee.

6:13: Faldo says he and Tiger "sorted things out" early in the week. But I thought there was no there there? 

6:18: Azinger: "it's not the hardest course they're ever going to play, certainly not Winged Foot." Unfortunately, no one pointed out that this is not necessarily a bad thing. 

6:19: Tirico again brings up how "crammed" things are at Liverpool, points out that the practice tee is setup at a public course across the street because the actual practice area between 3 and 18 is too small. Faldo, sarcastically: "It was right in the middle of the hospitality! Slightly inconvenient, with balls flying everywhere." 

6:30: It sounds like someone gooses Ivor Robson just as he announces a player's name. 

6:31 - Every leader is hitting driver off No. 1 except Tiger. Ernie outdrives him by 79 yards. Tiger lips out for birdie, Els drops second into front bunker and makes bogey.

6:42: Sergio opens with ho-hum 29, he's one back. 

6:53: ABC is off to their usual fine start, with plenty of good natured fun and solid commentating. What a difference a day makes. Though the scoring crawl appears to be designed for widescreen and HD televisions, because only half of it is showing on my old Sony.

6:57: Tiger bogies No. 2, Els birdies, and now with Garcia they are tied for the lead. 

7:07: First Tom Rinaldi essay on "chance" in links golf and the Open. Meanwhile Furyk joins the group at -11, Garcia puts old stroke on birdie putt on 11, leaving 7 footer short.

7:24: Ernie pulls driver on 5, Faldo and Azinger are skeptical of the choice. Tiger hits iron, can still get home in two. Azinger points out that the cool IBM hole overview graphic is incorrect on No. 5's hole location, but after seeing Tiger's solid approach, the graphic was right. Els drive ends up okay, but bad angle to come in from (again). Tiger birdie, Ernie par.

7:42: Terry Gannon interviews Phil Mickelson. Phil is unshaven, looks tired.

7:48: ABC previews each par-3 with their overhead graphics, Azinger asks if they're the easiest set of par-3's in major championship golf. Says that won't be the case at Medinah. First reminder of the day to really soak this up, because the next major is going to be tedious. Oh and Woods hits his shot tight on 6, trickles birdie putt in, while Els hits draw that doesn't spin, makes par.

7:49: Tirico calls Steve Williams a "hall of fame" caddy. There's a hall of fame for caddies?

8:20: Geoff Ogilvy is interviewed by Terry Gannon. Names Ian Baker Finch his favorite player growing up.

8:21: Steve Williams asks someone to put camera phone away. Nick Faldo: "that's the first time he's said the last 5 seconds." 

8:22: Cabrera plays 5 hole stretch -4, jumps to one shot back. 

8:32: Tiger hits 3-wood, 6 iron to par-5 10th. Sergio is just short of 18 in two with a very lofted iron. And the relentless commercial breaks continue.

8:52: Tiger rolls in 20 footer for birdie on 11, third day in a row he birdies the 393-yarder. Faldo is asked if there was an aura around Tiger, he hesistates in answering with an emphatic yes.

8:54: Azinger declares he's shocked that Calcaveccia doesn't kiss his hot blond caddie. Who is she?  **His girlfriend, which Azinger apparently mentioned.

8:56: Furyk admits to Terry Gannon that making himself a better player in the States cost him when it came to links golf and that he's learned to adjust to links golf better. 66 today would back that up. 

9:01: DiMarco hits it tight on 13, makes his third straight birdie to get to 11 under, and H.S. Colt still hasn't gotten any credit for that neat little redan like par-3.

9:03: Sergio tells Gannon that the greens are firming up, says driving the ball is vital, says pars are good.  I bet you're glad I documented that great moment in television history.

9:06: ABC graphic: Tiger and Ernie were 14-under yesterday, 1-under today through 12. Beatles "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" returns for the lead in to the commercial break after Steve Miller Band makes bizarre appearance at previous break.

9:16: DiMarco uses normal grip on long first putt at 14, then uses claw for 5-footer for par.

9:18: ABC graphic, Tiger through 13 today: 1 Driver, 8 3-woods, 29 irons off non-par-3 tees.

9:30: ABC having major technical difficulties. We see Tiger and Els approach 14, then only see Els making a par save putt and the end of Tiger's 3-putt. But we get the commercials and that plug in for the Senior British Open!

9:41: DiMarco birdies 16 to join Tiger and Sergio in the lead, then the sounds of Lady Madonna mean yet another commercial break.  

9:46: The commercials keep coming. The first hour wasn't this bogged down with ads. What happened? 

9:48: ABC returns from commercial, shows Tiger on 16, DiMarco on 17, Els on 16, CMA Music Festival plug, then goes to commercial at 9:50. Because of the tee times moving up an hour, don't they have an hour to kill when they could pay some of these bills?

10:00: Azinger: "for the first time I can remember, Tiger Woods is playing from the same places as us mere mortals with his strategy this week. He's not really taking advantage of his massive power. And he's beating everybody from where everybody hits it. You say Tiger's great when he hits it long. But he's great when he hits it the same distance as the rest of us." 

10:20: Maybe they could get more reporters, camera carts and other minglers following the last group?

10:24: Els scrapes around in 71, same with Tiger, who will be paired with Garcia, while Els will play with DiMarco, Furyk with Cabrera. Round time for leaders: 3 hours and 55 minutes.

10:25: Faldo on Tiger: "He doesn't need a driver at all. That's amazing." 

10:32: Tiger: "I didn't putt very well today." And "three three whips." Tiger says ball is rolling different speeds through different colors. Clampett said it first! Tiger: "these pins are not easy."