While the weather was awful on Friday, good PGA Tour golfing returned during Round 3 on Saturday.
His Open began with five bogeys across the first six holes on Thursday, but he settled in after a pep talk from his caddie - "What the f*** are you doing?" - on Thursday.
Koepka, who won the U.S. Open last month, hit three successive birdies from the 11th hole before making his only bogey at the 16th.
There was that familiar bounce in his step.
Teen sensation Phachara Khongwatmai, however, had three birdies and four bogeys but ran into trouble on the par-4 sixth hole, which he triple-bogied for a 7 and a round of 74, four over par. Spieth hit into another pot bunker off the tee, could only advance it out sideways, and came up short of the green in light rough. But I thought we did a really good job once that horn blew and we had a few minutes to kind of sit back. "The putter wasn't working quite as well today, but I didn't make the chances I needed to - some good ones coming in".
Spieth, a two-time major champion, holds a three-shot lead over Matt Kuchar, a man who has more than 80 top-10 finishes to his credit.
Spieth has converted eight of his past nine final-round leads into wins, with the only blemish being the mess he made losing a five-shot lead with nine holes to play at the 2015 Masters.
"I thought if I could keep it under par for the Championship I am right there for the weekend".
The South African shot an 8-under-62 Saturday, the lowest score ever in a major championship. "You nearly kind of see the finish line".
That was McIlroy's problem.
After rallying with four back-nine birdies in an opening 71, the Northern Irishman immediately picked up from where he left off to storm into red numbers.
"I am just trying to remember the last 12 holes and scrub the rest out of my mind", McIlroy said. He arrived at Birkdale having missed the cut at three of his previous four tournaments, while the error-strewn start to his first round virtually ruled him out of contention for a second claret jug.
Struggling to find his A-game, Day admits when the going gets tough he gets going.
Reigning U.S. Open victor Brooks Koepka is again in contention, while Matt Kuchar, one of the best players to have never won a major, is lurking in second.
"And that putt [for birdie] was very hard, because with any speed getting to the hole, the hole was on a crown, it was going to go three or four feet by, and then I've got a three- or four-footer for par for my putt".
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