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Summary

  1. Click the Play button for our live stream
  2. See interviews and build-up in Highlights

Live Reporting

By Andy Cryer and Ben Dirs

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Post update

    Righto everyone, that's that for another year. It was meant to be McIlroy's title, it ended up being McIlroy's title and chances are he'll win a few more of them. He could well end up being Europe's greatest ever player - and one of a handful of greatest players ever. Night all.

  2. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    BBC Sport's Conor McNamara on Twitter: Rory Glory.

  3. Post update

    Jay Townsend

    Former European Tour golfer on BBC Radio 5 live

    Rory McIlroy

    "In this day and age you see so many players trying to create torque and coil in their swing, but Rory has a type of swing that won't go away quickly. My old coach said you want a long swing when you're a kid because the older you get it will automatically shorten. His swing is going to last forever.

    "Rory has learned from the stuff that's gone on in the last 18 months. He's a clever kid and he learns quickly."

  4. Spare a thought for Rickie Fowler

    Rickie Fowler carded his fourth consecutive round in the 60s to become only the third player in an Open to achieve the feat and not win.

    The other two? Jesper Parnevik in 1994 and twice Open champion Ernie Els a year earlier.

  5. Post update

    David Leadbetter

    Leading golf coach on BBC Radio 5 live

    Rory's a streaky player but if he can find that consistency level over the next few years he's going to win a boatload of these majors. He's only 25. He's got a swing that's going to last and that's why he's a little bit streaky.

  6. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    Rory McIlroy thanks the usual suspects as he holds the Claret Jug and gives his winner's speech: "The Open is the one we all want, the one we all strive for. To hold this Claret Jug is an amazing feeling.

    "The course is a very, very good test of golf. I am delighted with the way it was set up, it seemed to work in my favour. The fans have turned out in their thousands and on behalf of all the players I'd like to say thank you. The support has been terrific all week. Even though I am a Manchester United fan, I still got good support.

    "It was a pleasure to play with Rickie and no doubt your time will come, Sergio too. Two of the best players in the world. This is the first major my mother has been at that I have won, so mum, this one is for you. I can't wait to defend this at St Andrews next year."

  7. Post update

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "For home players, he goes to the top apart from Nick Faldo. He is heading in the direction to become a superstar of golf. A superstar of golf is someone who has won five majors or more.

    "He is certainly in that league, a fantastic talent, he played some glorious golf, he has abilities others haven't got. Even if he hasn't got his A game he is still a tough man to beat.

    "Today was tough but he stuck with it and still seemed confident he would win it."

  8. Post update

    McILROY
  9. Players past and present Tweet words of congratulations

    #bbcgolf

    Former world number one Luke Donald: Well done Rory very classy indeed! #OpenChamp

    Former Open champion Gary Player: Congratulations Rory McIlroy on a fantastic victory at The Open. One more for the Grand Slam.

    Former Open winner Nick Faldo: Congratulations @McIlroyRory fantastic achievement! Grand Slam awaits!

  10. Post update

    Rickie Fowler and Sergio Garcia are welcomed to the stage as joint runners-up, they both receive a silver salver to stick on the top of the telly. Here's Rory McIlroy, 'Champion Golfer of the Year' for 2014...

  11. Presentation under way

    Rory McIlroy

    So, the presentation has begun, McIlroy will be hugging the Jug in a few minutes, a moment he has probably been dreaming about since he was a wee lad, hitting it about with a plastic club in his back yard in Holywood.

  12. Post update

    Rickie Fowler, who finished tied for second with Sergio Garcia, on BBC One: "It was a battle for me, I didn't hit my best but I had to fight through it. I made a late run but got on the gas a little bit too late. Rory played very steady. He hit some great shots, a great par save on 17 ended my hopes.

    "It has been successful year so far. The main goal was to be in contention in all four majors and we have one more left."

    Fowler has finished in the top five in all three of the majors this year.

  13. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Audrey Eager: How proud we are off him in Ireland! Roll on Rio2016!

    Undercover Batman: Look out Tiger Woods, here comes the new King of Golf!

    Dave Poyser: Buzzing for Rory McIlroy if that doesn't make you want to get out on the course I don't know what will!

  14. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    Open champion Rory McIlroy on BBC One: "It feels incredible. Today wasn't easy, a few guys were making runs at me, I needed to stay focused and concentrate. To win three legs of the four majors at 25 is a pretty good achievement, it is not going to sink in for a while.

    "The lead never got less than two, I always felt I had that little cushion. Coming into the back nine I know I had holes where I could make birdie. Sixteen was the hole that settled the championship I think. I don't think it matters to my dad so much but the few mates he did the bet with will be very happy."

  15. Post update

    Rory confirms that his dad has indeed landed 50 grand, having put a punt on his son winning the Open by the age of 25 - when he was only 15. Not just his dad, quite a few of his pals, apparently...

  16. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    "He has played some beautiful golf. A few little hiccups, moments of drama but what a wonderful champion we have. How proud we are in Great Britain."

  17. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    McIlroy embraces dad Gerry, mum Rosie and other close family and friends outside the scorer's hut - and here he is, as if by magic, being interviewed by the BBC.. We'll tell you what he's saying in a moment...

  18. Post update

    John Inverdale

    BBC Radio 5 live presenter

    "A British sporting superstar is born, because this is the moment that he'll be catapulted into the British sporting conscience unlike when he won his previous two majors."

  19. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    "He worked hard as a kid, he loved it, his father loved it. He has done it. Three great championships under his belt. I wonder what he is thinking now?"

  20. Post update

    Rory McIlroy
  21. Post update

    You can't say the chasing pack didn't give it a go but McIlroy's overnight lead was just too much. You have to think back to those two eagles yesterday afternoon - that's arguably what won it, giving him that extra bit of leeway and probably a couple more hours of sleep.

  22. Post update

    Rory McIlroy
  23. Final leaderboard

    -17 McIlroy (NI); -15 Garcia (Spa), Fowler (US); -13 Furyk (US); -12 Leishman (Aus), Scott (Aus); -11 D Johnson (US), Schwartzel (SA), E Molinari (Ita).

  24. MCILROY WINS THE OPEN BY TWO SHOTS

    McIlroy has a 10-footer for birdie at the last... doesn't borrow enough but that's a par, a round of 71 and a first Open Championship.

  25. Fowler cards 67 for -15

    Fowler with his long-range eagle putt... misses by a hair's breadth. The American is in for a 67 and -15 overall, shared for second with Garcia...

  26. Post update

    McIlroy has got a decent lie in the bunker... ALMOST HOLES IT! Now he's smiling...

  27. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    McIlroy hasn't taken the game face off yet, even as the crowd falls into raptures around the 18th green. Cap off, a few cursory doffs, but no smile as yet - he still has digging to do for victory...

  28. Post update

    Having bunted one off the tee, McIlroy decides to get the guns out from the fairway, thrashing his second into a pot bunker. Fowler safely on in two. putting for eagle and outright second...

  29. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Kaiser: That's the Claret Jug on its way to N. Ireland #welldonerory

    Paolo Brand: Iron off the tee down 18. Sensible play by Rory. Reminds you of Tiger in his pomp!

    Will Swarbrick: Sergio is an absolute icon. Needs a major.

    Toniwater: Colin Montgomerie no longer the best player never to win a major that accolade belongs to Sergio. Super effort! Will he ever win one?

  30. Garcia cards 66 for -15

    Sergio Garcia

    Garcia for eagle on 18, from about 25 feet... leaves it a couple of feet left of the cup but that's a birdie, a round of 66 and -15 for the week. If it wasn't for that pesky kid...

  31. Post update

    Garcia makes his way to the 18th green, patting his heart and blowing kisses as he comes. Good lad, good lad. McIlroy has still got his negotiating face on, even though most of the negotiating has been done. Johnson for par from off the green, hasn't hit it...

  32. Post update

    Garcia from the rough on 18 and he's pulled out a bonny shot, chasing it into the guts of the green. You can't really criticise the Spaniard, he's given it a real go. Fowler on tee at 18, rattles one down there with the big stick. McIlroy going with steel, bunts one safely down there...

  33. Leaders as McIlroy tees off at the 18th hole

    -17 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa), Fowler (US); -13 Furyk (US); -12 Leishman (Aus), Scott (Aus); -11 D Johnson (US), Schwartzel (SA).

  34. Open moments - 1999

    Jean van de Velde

    Jean Van de Velde stood on the 18th tee at Carnoustie knowing a double-bogey six would see him become the first Frenchman to win the Open in 92 years.

    Three shots later, he stood bare foot in the Barry Burn guarding the 18th green, prompting veteran BBC commentator Peter Alliss to say: "Would somebody please stop him. Give him a large brandy and mop him down."

    His collapse prompted a play-off - eventually won by Paul Lawrie - and is one of the most remarkable Open moments in history.

    You can watch video of Van de Velde's 18th hole catastrophe and see other Open moments on our feature.

  35. McIlroy pars 17, stays three ahead

    Rory McIlroy

    McIlroy has got a wee pitch over a bunker at 17 and it's a real beauty, leaving himself a pop-in for par. Fowler with a ballsy saver for par, he stays -14 and level with Garcia.

  36. Post update

    Garcia needs one good swing to seal that runner-up spot but this isn't it, his tee shot goes left. Johnson misses the fairway by 20 yards, his round got super-charged after the turn but the wheels have dropped off. Edoardo Molinari is in with a 68 for 11 under, he beats his brother by three shots after a see-saw battle all week.

  37. Post update

    McIlroy with a mid-iron into 17 and it's short and right - but OK. Fowler from the wispy nonsense, low fizzer, comes up short as well...

  38. Garcia pars 17, stays three behind

    Garcia putting for a birdie at 17, uphill, has to give it a chance... doesn't do that, bit of a muff, stays -14 and three behind McIlroy... Johnson for par from eight feet, tugs it left to drop back to 11 under.

  39. Post update

    Bernard Gallacher

    Three-time European Ryder Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live

    "When Rory first turned pro he set his stall out by saying he wanted to win majors. I think this week he's proved he's a true champion in every sense."

  40. Leaders as McIlroy tees off at 17th hole

    -17 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa), Fowler (US); -13 Furyk (US); -12 Leishman (Aus), D Johnson (US); -11 Scott (Aus), Schwartzel (SA).

  41. Post update

    McIlroy playing safe off the tee at 17, and why on earth not. Punches it down the middle, as easy as shelling peas...

  42. Post update

    Fowler drains his birdie putt at 16 to join Garcia on 14 under. Scott bumps his chip to within a couple of feet, he's got that for a 66. Dustin with his second at 17 and it's from the frying pan and into the fire... Garcia with 218 yards into the breeze, right at the pin, just runs out of puff but still some shot.

  43. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Rory McIlroy

    Many of you not happy with or impressed by crowd heckling. Fired Rory McIlroy up though, hit his drive at the 16th 357 yards.

    Julian Mellor: Not nice to see the crowd being disrespectful at the Open, not in the spirit of the game.

    Brian Carroll: Crowd trouble at the Open. Embarrassing and people need to remember it is a sport for gentlemen.

    Carl Longhawn: Crowd behaviour at the Open today has been poor in places, too much abuse from patrons to players.

  44. McIlroy birdies 16, leads by three

    Scott and Manassero stroll to the 18th like conquering heroes, but it's been contrasting days. World number one Scott is five under today, young Italian Manassero is one over. Back to McIlroy on 16, very nearly holing his eagle putt and popping in for birdie to increase his lead to three with two holes to go.

    Leaders: -17 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa), Fowler (US); -13 Furyk (US); -12 Leishman (Aus), D Johnson (US); -11 Scott (Aus), Schwartzel (SA).

  45. Furyk cards 65 for -13

    Furyk makes that six-footer for a rare 65 and the former US Open champion is the clubhouse leader on 13 under. Sorry about that, Garcia birdied 16 to get back to -14 and two off the lead. Johnson, too, has come alive down the back nine, birdies at 15 and 16 to get to -12. But here he is with a stinker of a drive down 17, rattling one off a grandstand miles right. Garcia drills one down there with a three wood, doing his best to hang onto second.

  46. Garcia moves to 14 under

    Sergio Garcia

    Furyk almost holes an escape at 18 and I believe he has that for a 65. Forget what I said about Garcia going after a heckler, it was just a call of nature after all. Sorry. Here he is, putting from range for a bogey on the 16th, but it doesn't come back for him. Still makes a birdie and he moves to within two of McIlroy, with two to play.

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa); -13 Fowler (US); -12 Leishman (Aus), Furyk (US); -11 Scott (Aus), D Johnson (US), Schwartzel (SA).

  47. McIlroy, leading by three, on the 16th

    Fowler on tee at 16, that's OK, we think. Rory winding one up... you can't get much better than that, strong and very, very long. Bit of drama, though, as Rory points out a mouthy fan with his driver and the man in question is led away, somewhat reluctantly, by stewards. Bizarrely, Garcia has apparently gone to speak to a heckler up on the 16th green - although he might have just gone to the toilet. I'll try to clear that up...

  48. Post update

    Scott for a bird on 17, misses by a whisker and stays 11 under and tied for sixth. Garcia with 244 yards to the flag at 16, six iron... peach, he's got a 25-footer for eagle. It's not quite over just yet. Johnson's tee shot was 34 yards ahead of Garcia's, and the Spaniard looked like his shoulders were going to separate from his body when he hit his. Johnson's second shot is pretty ordinary, however...

  49. Post update

    Not a great day for 2011 champion Darren Clarke, he's two over through 17, one of the few players not to be par or better today. Schwartzel with a monster for eagle on 18, shaves the hole left, but that's a five-under 67 and 11 under overall.

  50. McIlroy pars 15, leads by three with three to go

    Justin Rose in with a 72 for five under, England waits another year for an Open champion. Dustin Johnson has mullered his drive down the 16th, that's an almighty larrup. Garcia taking no prisoners either, that's enormous, but he's still about 50 yards behind Johnson. Fowler birdies 15 to join Garcia on -13, McIlroy has got a 12-footer for birdie on the same hole... not enough borrow, but it's a safe par.

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -13 Garcia (Spa), Fowler (US); -12 Leishman (Aus), Furyk (US); -11 Scott (Aus), D Johnson (US).

  51. Post update

    Mark James

    Former Ryder Cup captain on BBC TV

    Sergio Garcia

    "Has that ended Sergio Garcia's challenge? That was pretty much inexcusable. Very, very poor shot. The ball was on an upslope and he should have made a better fist of it."

  52. Post update

    David Leadbetter

    Leading golf coach on BBC Radio 5 live

    "That's a real momentum breaker. I would have expected Sergio to get up and down from there."

  53. Post update

    Johnson made another birdie, moves to -11. Adam Scott joins him with a birdie on 16, McDowell is in with a 67 after an eagle at the last.

  54. Garcia bogeys 15, three behind

    Guess what? Sergio has left his escape in the bunker at 15. That could be that. McIlroy is watching back down the fairway, that'll make this next shot that much easier. Garcia pulls out a beauty with his next shot, but it's a tap-in for bogey and he's back to -13 and three off the lead.

  55. Post update

    Fowler stays 12 under after a fine saver at 14, four behind McIlroy...

  56. McIlroy pars 14, stays two ahead

    Garcia on tee at the par-three 15th, needs to get something out of this. Once again he steps away from his ball after addressing it... steps back in, waggles several times, plonks it in a green-side pot... McIlroy putting from long range for birdie at 15, leaves it a few inches left, stays two ahead...

  57. Furyk birdies 16, -12

    McIlroy, too, comes up short with his second at 14 but he will certainly make par from there. Schwartzel has birdied 15 and 16, the South African is 10 under and in a share of sixth. Furyk birdies 16 to get to 12 under, joins Leishman as the clubhouse leader.

    Jim Furyk
  58. Garcia pars 14, stays two behind

    Garcia up the hill at 14, misses by a couple of inches. Safely in going back, he stays -14 and two off the lead. Johnson, too, stays 10 under.

  59. Leishman cards 65 for -12

    Leishman just misses with his eagle effort at 18 but that's a round of 65 for the Aussie, joint lowest this week, and 12 under overall...

  60. Leaderboard

    The Open leaderboard

    Selected others:-8: David Howell (Eng); Francesco Molinari (Ita); Victor Dubuisson (Fra); -6: Angel Cabrera (Arg); Keegan Bradley (US); -5: Phil Mickelson (US); Justin Rose (Eng)

  61. Post update

    Fowler on 14 and he's leaked his tee shot wild and windy and right of the fairway. McIlroy with three wood and he's middled it, right into the middle of that bell-shaped opening down the fairway.

  62. Post update

    David Leadbetter

    Leading golf coach on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Sergio's a better wind player than Rory. He's able to flight his irons nicely in these conditions. It's a gusting, cold wind."

    McIlroy's troubles at 13 were owing to the Northern Irishman's inability to hit the low iron shots Garcia is renowned for.

  63. Post update

    Garcia with his second at 14 and he's under-clubbed again, this wind is taking an effect. Leishman gives himself a chance of an eagle at 18, that would get him to -13. Dustin finds the front of the 14th, probably could have done with an eight.

  64. Post update

    Andrew Cotter

    BBC Sport commentator

    "Rory McIlroy is staggering towards the finish line. Still in front, but a real fight on his hands. Garcia is a hole ahead and hot on his heels."

  65. McIlroy bogeys 13, leads by two

    Rory McIlroy

    Scott for birdie on 15, leaves it marginally left and stays 10 under. The sauce is kicking in in the stands, some of the punters are becoming very excitable as we hurtle towards the denouement. McIlroy leaves that birdie effort short, his lead cut to two shots...

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa); -12 Fowler (US); -11 Leishman (Aus), Furyk (US); -10 Lowry (Ire), Schwartzel (SA), Scott (Aus), E Molinari (Ita), D Johnson (US).

  66. Post update

    Garcia on tee at 14 and he's got a small wood in his mitts. Goes for the low fader, takes a big old divot, and that's dreamy. McIlroy plops out of the rough and his ball very nearly slips away into a bunker on the other side. He's got a stinker for par. Not so Fowler, who'll pop in from two feet.

  67. Post update

    Fowler, too, comes up short, everyone underestimating the wind on the 13th hole. McIlroy walks jauntily towards his ball but the cocked head tells you he's anxious about what he might find when he gets there. Word reaches me that it's sitting up nicely...

  68. Post update

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "A splendid-looking card for Sergio Garcia but holes are starting to run out. He has had a couple of good breaks though and still has a chance."

  69. Post update

    Garcia makes par at 12, as does Johnson. Adam Scott is actually 10 under after that birdie on 14, sorry. McIlroy with six iron off the tee at 13... wrong club, and wrong direction, knee deep in nonsense...

  70. Greg Norman swing tips: Watch Rory

    Twice Open champion Greg Norman on Twitter: Every good swing Rory McIlroy makes watch how his left shoulder stays down & around through impact. His bad swings his left shoulder goes up.

  71. Furyk birdies 15 for -11

    Fowler with eight feet for par and that's a corker, straight down the pipe, he stays -12 after a fine up-and-down. Johnson with a cute chip at 13, should make par from there. Jim Furyk on 15, for birdie from six feet... in it goes, he moves to -11. Garcia chipping where he might have putted and that's a canny little effort, should pop in for par.

  72. Post update

    Andrew Cotter

    BBC Sport commentator

    "Rickie Fowler five behind and still fighting. He needed that par and he got it."

  73. McIlroy pars 12, stays three ahead

    Garcia on 13, from 183 yards... seven iron, just short of the short stuff, but also short of the bunker. Scott bends in a birdie on 14, gets to nine under. McIlroy leaves his birdie effort just short at 12, stays -17, three ahead of the rabid chasing pack.

  74. Samuel L. Jackson selfie on 18

    Samuel L. Jackson
  75. Post update

    McIlroy slap-bang in the middle of the 12th, seven iron, that's good enough. American Ryan Moore made eagle at 16, there's been a lot of those today, and he's nine under. Shot gone for Dubuisson at 13, the Frenchman with the inscrutable face falls to -9.

  76. Post update

    Garcia with another fine saver at 12 - it's one thing getting some luck, it's another thing making the most of it. Huge support for Sergio - it's not that they want McIlroy to lose, they just want a gun-fight down the stretch.

    Leaders: -17 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa); -12 Fowler (US); -11 Leishman (Aus); -10 Lowry (Ire), Furyk (US), E Molinari (Ita), Dubuisson (Fra).

  77. McIlroy's home support

    Mark Simpson of Holywood Golf Club speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live's John Inverdale: "We're more nervous than him, I think he's looking cool. Some people here are overcoming their nerves with a little tipple from the bar.

    "Many of the members here bet on Rory to win like his father Gerry, so people here stand to win thousands of pounds."

    Simpson said McIlroy's been on the radar since the rules were changed at Holywood to allow the then eight-year-old to play on his own.

    "The rule used to be that anyone under 10 couldn't play unsupervised but Rory was always here practising and shooting 73, 74 as a teenager."

  78. Leishman birdies 16 for-11

    No tightness from McIlroy on tee at 12, he's marmalised that down the middle. Leishman taps in for birdie on 16 to move to 11 under and outright fourth. Garcia with a cute third, he's got five feet for par. Schwartzel makes birdie at the short 15th, moves to nine under.

  79. Garcia hits the stand on the 12th

    Marc Leishman is hot at the moment, just missing from off the green at 16. Garcia playing across the dog leg with a six iron - the longer this round goes on, the longer he's taking over his shots, the nerves are settling in. What a stroke of luck that is - his approach goes head-high into the grandstand and after a late fore call and plenty of hands on heads, his ball ends up on the edge of the green. Needs to make the most of that...

  80. McIlroy pars 11th hole

    Fowler's long-range birdie attempt comes up just short on 11, he taps in to stay -12. Justin Rose of England, who came into this week off the back of two wins, is one over today through 15, hasn't been able to get much going. McIlroy makes that par, stays three clear...

  81. Post update

    McIlroy putting from just off the 11th green... there's a bit of chicken left on that bone, he's got a knee-knocker from seven feet. McDowell picks up birdies at 14 and 15, moves to seven under...

  82. Post update

    Victor Dubuisson

    Dubuisson is fast earning a reputation as one of the greatest scramblers since Seve - type 'Dubuisson' and 'cactus' into Youtube - and here he is with a sweet sweep from the rough on 12, right into the heart of the green. Garcia on tee at 12, into a brisk cross wind. He's got 447 yards and he's going with five wood... finds the first cut, that's OK though.

  83. Post update

    Marc Leishman of Australia made birdie at 15 to get to -10, super tee shot. Garcia for birdie on 11... starts miles wide, suddenly ducks back in... and shaves the edge of the hole. Stays 14 under, the facial expression says he knows he's in with a shot, however remote. Dustin Johnson rams home his par putt to stay nine under.

  84. Post update

    BBC Radio 5 live

    Gary Player, who won three Opens, on BBC Radio 5 live:

    "The biggest disappointment is the ball is going 50 yards further than my day and the golf courses are becoming obsolete. Players are going off the tee with irons and it is a tragedy. They have to put the ball back 50 yards for professionals, no question.

    "The Open championship always meant so much to me. Around the world it has always been the most important tournament. I felt gratitude when I won it. It is a gift from God because millions of people want to do it. Tonight we will see a man destined to be the next grand slam winner - Rory McIlroy."

  85. Post update

    Garcia walks away from his ball as he hears a camera click, before stepping back and throttling one onto the front of the 11th. The next four holes are into the wind, from 11 to 14, and here's Rory sending his tee shot straight down the middle, but below the plateau. Swindon's David Howell is in with a 68 for eight under, good to see him back in the swing of things.

  86. Post update

    Sergio Garcia
  87. McIlroy birdies 10 for -17

    Rory for eagle on 10, right on target until the very last. But that's two birdies on the spin and he gets to three ahead again and back under par for his round. Birdie, too, for Fowler, he stays -11 and third.

  88. Post update

    Dustin Johnson

    Johnson makes birdie on 10, moves to nine under. McIlroy's second into 10, five iron, safely on, has got about 15 feet for eagle. Fowler with 228 yards left, even better. Sergio taking iron off the tee at 11... into the first cut, not real drama...

  89. Garcia eagles 10 for -14 - two behind McIlroy

    Furyk with a cosmic approach at 12, that could be three straight birdies after that eagle at five. Karlsson has made a mess of the 12th, leaves with a double and falls to -9. SERGIO! Eagle at 10! The Spaniard moves to -14 and two behind McIlroy. McIlroy, remember, should pick up a shot - or two - directly behind him...

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -14 Garcia (Spa); -11 Fowler (US); -10 Lowry (Ire), Dubuisson (Fra), Furyk (US), E Molinari (Ita).

  90. Post update

    Nick Dougherty

    European Tour player on BBC Radio 5 live

    "The mentality, golfing cliché though it is, is take one shot at a time, even if you were playing another 100 holes. That's how Rory got such a big lead in the first place."

  91. Post update

    Garcia in the semi-rough on 10, 228 yards to the pin. Four iron, we think, and that's a peach of an approach, leaving himself 12 feet for eagle. Make that and the lead is cut to two. McIlroy on 10... boom-bang-a-bangs his drive straight down there. Fowler follows him down there, both should pick up shots from here on this par five.

  92. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy

    Tim Bunting: Great to see Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler playing well and chatting so much. True role models and fantastic golf ambassadors.

    Might be a bit less chat though in the coming two hours as the tension mounts...

  93. Post update

    Ireland's Shane Lowry, who is tied fourth on 10 under after a final round 65, on BBC One: "I played pretty much flawless golf. I warmed up very poorly this morning and left the range in anger. Being close to the top of the leaderboard gives me great satisfaction."

  94. Post update

    Philip Parkin

    BBC Sport on-the-course reporter

    "He needed that. Just at the right time for McIlroy. Huge applause from everyone."

  95. McIlroy birdies nine, leads by four

    Dubuisson gives his eagle attempt a good go at 10 but races it by. McIlroy bends in that birdie chance at nine, reopens a four-shot lead over second-placed Garcia. A little fist pump, a purse of the lips, a little bit of relief perhaps?

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -12 Garcia (Spa); -11 Karlsson (Swe), Fowler (US); -10 Lowry (Ire), Dubuisson (Fra), Furyk (US), E Molinari (Ita).

  96. Adam Scott birdies 10 & 11, -9

    Adam Scott

    Fowler onto the front of the ninth green, McIlroy with eight iron from 196 yards and he's all over the flag, chance to get a shot back from about 12 feet. World number one Adam Scott suggested somebody might shoot 62 today. Double at the seventh rather scuppered his hopes, but birdies at 10 and 11 mean he's -3 today and -9 overall.

  97. Video highlights

    A birdie and two bogeys from Rory McIlroy so far today and you can watch those key moments by clicking on the highlights tab at the top of this page.

  98. Post update

    Furyk birdies 10 and 11 to get to 10 under and tied for fifth, Garcia makes that par putt at nine for an opening nine of 32. He's doing what he needs to, picking up the odd shot and not making mistakes. Par for Fowler on eight, stays -11, McIlroy follows him in for -15. McIlroy is one of only three men in the top 35 currently over par for his round... news reaches me that Caroline Wozniacki, his old squeeze, has just won a tournament in Istanbul. Aaah, the celebrations that might have been...

  99. Shane Lowry 65 for -10

    Robert Karlsson lops on at 11, has a four-footer to stay -11. Shane Lowry of Ireland is in with a 65, seven birdies on his card and he's got the clubhouse lead on 10 under. Garcia taking three wood from just off the green at nine... leaves it five feet short, has that for par. I don't like those shots, with my hacker's head on...

  100. Post update

    Garcia overcooks his tee shot at the par-three ninth, leaves himself a devilish chip. McIlroy safely on in two at eight. Rickie Fowler with 174 yards left and that's safe, but not great.

  101. Leaderboard

    Open leaderboard

    Selected others:-8: Justin Rose (Eng), Charl Schwartzel (SA), Francesco Molinari (Ita), Dustin Johnson (US); -6: Angel Cabrera (Arg); Stephen Gallagher (Sco); -5: Phil Mickelson (US); Darren Clarke (NI); +1: Tom Watson

  102. F Molinari 67 for -8, E Molinari birdies 7, 8, 9 for -10

    Wotcha, Ben Dirs here until the close. Here's McIlroy on seven, sweeping one down there with an iron. Francesco Molinari eagled the last for a 67 to finish eight under, Edoardo Molinari has threaded together three birdies between seven and nine, is out in 32 and 10 under. Garcia stays 12 under through eight.

  103. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    We asked for tweets from exotic locations and they're flooding in:

    Chris Brown: Following from the office in Nouakchott, Mauritania. Most definitely NOT exotic.

    Steve Tooker: Ordinarily, I'd be waking up to watch The Open in Chicago but just moved to Tokyo and so very late night! Come on Rory

    JayHaytch: An Englishman and an Irishman watching in Phnom Penh. C'Mon Rory!!!

    Blimey, and we're in northwest England. Keep the exotic tweets from 'ordinary' locations coming using #bbcgolf or via text on 81111 and a reminder you can also join in on our Facebook page or on Google +

    Pat McCrossan: Might have to watch Rory from behind the sofa. He's beginning to wobble.

    That's more like it.

  104. Eagle for Karlsson

    Robert Karlsson with his second eagle of the day on 10. Now up to -11. McIlroy makes par on seven and stays -15. This is getting exciting and to take you home, it's Ben Dirs. Over to you Ben.

    Leaders: -15 McIlroy (NI); -12 Garcia (Spa); -11 Karlsson (Swe), Fowler (US); -10 Lowry (Ire), Dubuisson (Fra); -9 Furyk (US), E Molinari (Ita), Leishman (Aus).

  105. Touch of genius from McIlroy

    Rory McIlroy

    A champion's touch from McIlroy. Out of the bunker on seven to leave him a simple par putt to stay at -15. Shane Lowry takes the clubhouse lead with a birdie on 18 to move to 10 under, after a round of 65.

  106. McIlroy in the bunker on seventh hole

    Rory (-15) is blowing up. He has found the bunker with his second on the par-four seventh. With back-to-back bogeys, this up and down for par is the last thing he needed. Rickie Fowler on the dancefloor on seven for a birdie chance to move to -12.

  107. Post update

    Shane Lowry

    What a round Ireland's Shane Lowry. Already six under for the day and now has a good birdie chance on 18. At nine under for the championship, he has left his push just too late.

  108. Mickelson motivated for more

    Defending champion Phil Mickelson talks to BBC One: "It's the greatest feeling to come back here having won this tournament. The people treat us so well and walking up 18 is an emotional feeling because it brings back the memories I had last year.

    "It's motivation for me to work harder because I know how great it feels to have the Claret Jug and win. I'll work hard and will look forward to St. Andrews. I can't think of anywhere better to play."

    Mickelson finished five under for the tournament after a round of 68.

  109. Past Open champions

    Ballesteros
  110. A new first for Tiger?

    Tiger Woods

    Tiger Woods has set all kinds of records but here's a first for the 14-times major champion: The 38-year-old, as an amateur or pro, has never finished more than 19 shots behind the winner of major.

    At +6, and with McIlroy -15, the deficit is currently 21 strokes.

  111. Post update

    Justin Rose birdies 10 to go three under for the day and up to -8. McIlroy (-15) is having a wobble as his tee shot on seven finds the rough. What a test of character this is for him. No player has ever lost a six-shot lead on the final round of the Open. He won't want to become the first.

  112. McIlroy lead reduced to three

    Rory McIlroy

    Superb up and down for Rickie Fowler on six and he stays -11. McIlroy can't follow him and drops another shot as he pushes his par putt past the hole from five foot to drop back to -15. He is one over for the day and his six-shot lead has suddenly become just three from Garcia. The Spaniard chips brilliantly from the bunker on seven and saves his par.

    Leaders: -15 McIlroy (NI); -12 Garcia (Spa); -11 Fowler (US); -10 Dubuisson (Fra); -9 Karlsson (Swe), Leishman (Aus), Lowry (Ire).

  113. Post update

    Nice chip from McIlroy from off the green on six. It keeps rolling though leaving the leader a tester for par and to stay at -16.

  114. Post update

    Sergio, you didn't want to do that. Puts an iron shot into the greenside bunker on seven with his second. Needs to show his touch to rescue par here.

  115. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    John McEnerney: Watch your back McIlroy, Sergio is moving like a bull in Pamplona at the San Fermin Festival & is after you! Vamos Sergio

    Sean Cotter: Getting the live update from Hoi An in Vietnam. Go on Rory!!

    Anyone else watching from an exotic or unusual location? Tweet us #bbcgolf or text us on 81111.

  116. Post update

    More sand for Fowler (-11) from off the tee on six. Leader McIlroy (-16) is inches away from stopping on the green but it keeps rolling and rolling and slips down the slope, off the green. That is not easy to get up and down for par from there. This is very much championship on.

  117. Post update

    Two-time Open champion Greg Norman tweets: Now the pressure mounts! This is why we love this great game. Watching or playing.

  118. Post update

    Hope for Garcia and he keeps his cool with a tee shot down the fairway on seven. At -12, the Spaniard is just four shots behind McIlroy as he chases his first major.

  119. Post update

    Rory McIlroy
  120. McIlroy back to -16 - leads by four

    Four shots the difference now. McIlroy pushes his putt past the right on the par-five fifth and drops back to -16. The Northern Irishman is only one of four men in the top 30 not to be under par for their round today.

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -12 Garcia (Spa); -11 Fowler (US); -10 Dubuisson (Fra); -9 Lowry (Ire), Karlsson (Swe), Leishman (Aus).

  121. McIlroy in trouble on the fifth

    Rory McIlroy

    Suddenly you just begin to wonder..... McIlroy's chip from off the green on par-five fifth is short and leaves him a horror for par. Segio Garcia (-12) shows nerves of steel for par on six.

  122. Post update

    David Leadbetter

    Leading golf coach on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Sergio Garcia looks very focused here and he's got the crowd behind him. He's probably the second favourite and we all know how popular Spaniards are in Britain. He's a young 35, he hits the ball a mile and looks 25, so I think there's plenty of time for him yet."

  123. Post update

    Leader McIlroy (-17) gets a free drop after being wedged underneath the grandstand. Still a tough-looking shot from the willowy rough and he gets a flyer. His chips flies across the green and rolls off the back to leave him a horrible up and down for par. Champagne golf from Fowler as he chips out from the bunker to within 10 feet of the hole, despite a horrible stance. Birdie chance for Fowler (-11).

  124. Post update

    A rueful smile from Garcia (-12) after his tee shot on six. All fine though as he gives himself an outside chance for birdie.

  125. Post update

    Fowler finds the bunker with his second on the par-five fifth. McIlroy gets lucky with his lie in the rough but doesn't look happy with his connection and rightly so. His ball lands close up to the grandstand on the right.

  126. Garcia moves to 12 under

    No problems for Garcia. Birdie on five and five shots adrift. He's behind you Rory.

  127. Past Open champions

    Tony Jacklin
  128. Birdie chance for Garcia

    Looks like another birdie for Garcia on the par-five fifth. Delicate chip from the rough to within a few feet off the hole. The Spaniard keeping things interesting and should move to -12, just five shots adrift of McIlroy.

  129. Stand aside Henrik, Robert's in town

    Swedish golf fan Magnus speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live's Conor McNamara: "We came for Stenson when we arrived but Robert is the man today."

    Robert Karlsson (-10) is four under through seven holes while Stenson, European number one last season, finished one under for the tournament.

  130. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    Tiger Woods says Rory McIlroy can attack or defend given the size of his lead going into the final round:

    "I think the beauty is having such a large lead. You can make mistakes and still win. The guys have to come to get you. He did a wonderful job of making that three-four-three in the last three holes [on Saturday]. All of a sudden he went from tied to a six-shot lead. He can afford to play conservatively. He can also afford to play aggressively. When you've got a big lead like that, you can play both ways."

  131. Post update

    Rory McIlroy
  132. Post update

    Second birdie of the day for Justin Rose on eight and he moves to seven under. Rickie Fowler, who made par on four, (-11) just about ok off the tee on five. McIlroy in an awkward spot after finding the rough. Still looking good for his six-shot lead though.

  133. Poulter practising not watching

    Ian Poulter

    Ian Poulter tweets: "Sometimes this is the best thing. Reset the brain be alone and start flushing it. Never ever say it's not possible.

    "Just been a little unsettled last couple on months, all will be clear very soon.... Then it's full systems go. Time to press really hard!"

    Poulter missed the cut for the weekend.

  134. Eagle for Dubuisson

    Dubuisson eagles five to move to 10 under. Angel Cabrera takes the clubhouse lead on six under. Robert Karlsson misses his birdie putt and stays at 10 under.

  135. McIlroy pars the fourth - stays 17 under

    Fowler fighting for par on four. Opts to putt up the slope and onto the green and doesn't get it right. Leaves himself five feet. McIlroy slides a birdie putt inches past but comfortably makes par on the same hole.

  136. Karlsson buzzing

    The eighth hole and Robert Karlsson - already with two birdies and an eagle - has hurled a stunner into the green. He was walking while it was in the air. The big man, decked in blue today, is in his pomp. One solid putt and he could be five under for the day through eight holes.

  137. Mickelson signs off with birdie

    Defending champion Phil Mickelson signs off his championship with a birdie on 18. His 68 leaves him five under for the championship and gives him a share of the clubhouse lead with Bristol's Chris Wood. It won't last.

  138. Post update

    Rickie Fowler

    Marc Leishman birdies eight to move to nine under. Garcia (-11) doesn't hit his birdie putt on four. McIlroy will have another birdie chance on four, while Fowler rolls off the back of the green. Advantage McIlroy, who already leads by six.

    Leaders: -17 McIlroy (NI); -11 Fowler (US), Garcia (Spa); -10 Karlsson (Swe); 9 D Johnson (US), Scott (Aus), Leishman (Aus).

  139. Post update

    BBC Radio 5 live

    BBC Radio 5 Live's Vassos Alexander: "Three birdies in five holes for Adam Scott. He said he wanted the major-scoring record today and do you know what, he's on course."

    The best score in a major remains 63, so Scott and co will have to card a 10-under-par round today to break the record.

  140. Post update

    Easy does it. McIlroy (-17) sends a iron just where he wants it from the tee on four. Fowler (-17) a little bit wayward and into the rough. Adam Scott birdies five, his third of the day to move to nine under. Not giving up yet.

  141. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    Getty Images snapper David Cannon selects another favourite pic from this week's Open at Hoylake:

    Adam Scott

    "This is Adam Scott and the classic links bunker shot. You don't get sand like that at any other tournament. It goes to powder. You can almost see it in his face that he's just about to duck as that shower of sand comes across. In my view he's the purest player in the game and such a nice person, so I was pleased with that one."

  142. Post update

    Rickie Fowler forgets to hit his birdie putt on three. Tester for par but nails it to stay six shots behind Rory McIlroy and on -11.

  143. Past Open champions

    Nick Faldo
  144. McIlroy pars the third

    No problems for McIlroy. He chips to within a couple of feet on three. Easy par for the championship leader. Victor Dubuisson back to eight under with par on four.

  145. Eagle for Furyk

    McIlroy's first little slip. His approach on three fails to hang on at the back of the green and rolls into the semi rough. Should be able to get up and down for par. Jim Furyk eagles the par-five fifth, after hitting the flag with his second, and is up to eight under. Plenty attepting to chase down leader McIlroy (-17).

  146. Post update

    BBC Radio 5 live

    Rory McIlroy

    Gary Player, who won three Opens, on BBC Radio 5 live: "For people to say it is all over, they are dreaming. Yes, I expect McIlroy to win but anything can happen in the last round of a major. You could get a seven on a hole and a man could get three and everything changes.

    "When I was leading I brainwashed myself I was not leading by strength of mind. Rory is a wonderful young man and we are going to see some terrific things from him in the future. There is no limit to what he could do. He could go on to win 10 to 12 majors.

    "He has to say to himself 'everyone who wins a tournament has adversity. If I start with a couple of bogeys it is not that serious'. Just keep calm and keep realising you have to be aggressive. The best means of defence is attack. He is so good, so talented and he is destined for success."

  147. Birdie for Garcia to move to -11

    Brilliant from Garcia. Sinks a putt from about 20 feet to move to -11, his second birdie in the first three holes. Dustin Johnson pars three. David Howell up to seven under with a birdie on 10. The Moonraker is three under for the day.

    Leaders: -17 McIlroy (NI); -11 Fowler (US), Garcia (Spa); -10 Karlsson (Swe); -9 D Johnson (US); -8 Leishman (Aus), Furyk (US), Scott (Aus).

  148. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Slightly awkward atmosphere on the first tee as we waited for the clock to tick down to McIlroy's start time. A group of fellas in yellow tops and green wigs sung an inappropriate song about Rory's ex Caroline Wozniacki. McIlroy clearly heard it and stared straight ahead, cheeks possibly flushing a touch. Didn't seem to affect his golf, though, and hit a mint one down the middle.

  149. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Andy Tunstall: McIlroy birdie 1st hole just give him the Claret Jug now

    Mark Smith: Great start by Rory. Nerves of steel.

    Nick Taylor: Wow, Rory can hit those stingers just as well as Woods ever could - great tee shot on the 3rd.

  150. Eagle for Karlsson

    Elsewhere a flying start for Robert Karlsson as two birdies and an eagle on the first five holes take him to -10 and just seven shots off McIlroy. Fowler and McIlroy on the fairway on three.

  151. Fowler birdies, McIlroy par

    Almost another birdie for Rory. This time his putt tails off and slides to the left on two. Simple par though. Fowler pulls a shot back with birdie on the same hole. Up to -11 and back to just six shots behind.

    Garcia safely on the green on three, outside chance of birdie.

  152. Birdie

    Birdies being made all over at the moment. Brilliant read from Ryan Moore (-7) as he sinks from 15 feet for birdie on seven.

  153. Post update

    McIlroy will be happy enough with that. Safely on the green on two after a birdie at the first. A long birdie putt left but, with a seven-shot lead, pars will do. Playing partner Fowler (-10) puts one close to set up a birdie chance. Opportunity to get a shot back.

  154. McIlroy v Fowler

    Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler

    Age: McIlroy: 25 Fowler: 25

    Major titles: McIlroy 2 Fowler: 0

    Best Open finish: McIlroy: Tied third Fowler: Tied 5th

    Professional wins: McIlroy: 12 Fowler: 2

  155. Post update

    Does this man have no nerves? McIlroy (-17) sends off a perfect tee shot on two. Playing partner Rickie Fowler (-10) also safely on the fairway. Sergio Garcia (-10) leaves himself a tester for par on two but makes it, while a shot further back, Dustin Johnson's birdie putt on two just slides past.

  156. Post update

    John Inverdale

    BBC Radio 5 live presenter

    After McIlroy birdies the opening hole to extend his lead to seven:

    "That was a Carl Froch punch to a George Groves chin. McIlroy could win this by miles."

  157. McIlroy taking nothing for granted

    Rory McIlroy said he was taking nothing for granted despite carrying a six-shot lead into the final round of the Open at Royal Liverpool.

    "I know leads can go quickly," he said. "That's why you can't let yourself think about winning."

    I wonder how he feels now after stretching the lead to seven on the first?

  158. Birdie for McIlroy

    What a statement of intent that is. McIlroy (-17) leads by seven after a birdie on one. Fowler is short with his birdie putt to stay at -10.

    Leaders: -17 McIlroy (NI); -10 Fowler (US), Garcia (Spa); -9 D Johnson (US); -8 Leishman (Aus).

  159. Leaderboard

    The Open leaderboard

    Selected others:-6: Justin Rose (Eng), Charl Schwartzel (SA); -5: Chris Wood (Eng), Graeme McDowell (NI); +1: Tom Watson (US), Jason Dufner (US)

  160. Scott on the charge

    Back-to-back birdies for Adam Scott on three and he moves to eight under. Not too late for the Australian if he keeps this form up. Garcia with his second on two and an outside chance to move to -11, leaving a birdie putt from about 30 feet.

  161. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    Birdie for Marc Leishman on six, his third in a row to move to eight under. Rickie Fowler (-10) lands a beauty onto the green on the first to leave 15 feet for birdie. McIlroy (-16), who drove 48 yards further than Fowler, responds with a solid iron into the middle of green. Advantage Fowler on hole on though.

  162. Money on McIlroy

    In 2004, Rory McIlroy's dad Gerry and three friends gathered £100 each and placed a £400 bet on the Northern Irishman to win the Open before he was 25.

    At the time, he was 15. They were given odds of 500-1.

    I'll bet the bookmakers are regretting those odds now, while the McIlroys could be planning one big party.

    £200,000 probably isn't a great deal for them these days mind.......

    Read about the bet and why McIlroy is 18 holes from greatness here.

  163. Birdie for Garcia - moves to -10

    Sergio Garcia

    Hello. Birdie for Sergio Garcia on the first to move to 10 under and just six shots behind McIlroy.

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -10 Fowler (US), Garcia (Spa); -9 D Johnson (US); -8 Leishman (Aus).

  164. McIlroy safely under way

    Rory McIlroy

    Dustin Johnson (-9) chips well on the first to save par.

    While on tee, Rickie Fowler doffs his cap before driving the ball beautifully down the fairway. Leader Rory McIlroy is also safely under way after taking the driver out and smoking it down the middle. That'll do for starters.

    Here we go. Buckle up.

  165. Post update

    Philip Parkin

    BBC Sport on-the-course reporter

    "There's so much anticipation from the crowd at the chance of having a British winner. The reception was spectacular. There's a bit of breeze, a bit more so than this morning when there were some low scores."

  166. Fowler the man for the majors in 2014

    Rickie Fowler

    American Rickie Fowler, playing with Rory McIlroy in the final group and his nearest challenger at -10, spoke with BBC Sport on the practice range: "It's a bit of a challenge being the underdog. I'll be drawing on just about anything I can, I've been playing well in the majors this year and I've got another final grouping again today after the US Open."

    Fowler finished tied-second at last month's US Open and tied-fifth at the Masters in April. He's the new Jason Day.

  167. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Tiger Woods likened Rory McIlroy to Phil Mickelson as the Northern Irishman prepares to complete his Open coronation: 'When he gets it going, he gets it going real good. When he's off, he's way off,' said Woods. 'There's no right or wrong way of doing. That's just the way he does.'"

  168. Rory's 'trigger' words

    #roryswords

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Watched Rory and Rickie on the putting green. They're friends but there was only time for a brief 'hi'. Rory has the gaze of the golfing world upon him. McIlroy said earlier this week he's been using two 'trigger' words to keep himself focused and playing well. He says he will reveal what they are if he wins in Sunday. Any ideas what they could be? #roryswords"

  169. Post update

    Sir Nick Faldo

    Six-time major champion on BBC TV

    "To find the extra gear like Rory did yesterday, that was the important thing. For him to do have made those two eagles on 16 and 18, that will carry him through today. I led by five going into the final day at St Andrews in 1990 and it got to me, there were second thoughts."

  170. Post update

    Rory McIlroy

    McIlroy strides onto the first tee to a huge ovation. The crowd don't see him losing this.

  171. Birdie for Scott

    Birdie for Adam Scott on two to move to seven under. Still with a chance, just.

    Leaders: -16 McIlroy (NI); -10 Fowler (US); -9 Garcia (Spa), D Johnson (US); -7 Dubuisson (Fra), E Molinari (Ita), Lowry (Ire), Walker (US), Karlsson (Swe), Scott (Aus), Leishman (Aus).

  172. Post update

    Cheers Luke. Who wouldn't be?

    So here we go. Can Rory McIlroy become the third man to win three majors by the age of 25? He tees off in about seven minutes with a six-shot lead.

  173. Post update

    And with Rory approaching the first tee, I will sign off and hand over to the steady hands of Andy Cryer. He looks up for this...Rory that is, not Andy.

  174. Post update

    Head to head
  175. Garcia and Johnson off

    Dustin Johnson starts his final round with an accurate tee-shot on the first and Sergio Garcia pings his down the middle too. A nice start for the men at nine under.

  176. Stunning Manassero

    Robert Karlsson on the second putts for birdie...drops. Seven under. Matteo Manassero in the group behind the Swedish player has a horrible shot from the rough...outrageous. His iron shot rolls up the green and to within a few feet.

  177. Post update

    Rory McIlroy moves from the range to the putting green. Penny for your thoughts Rory. Around 12 minutes until he tees off.

  178. Johnson's title hope

    American Dustin Johnson on his chances of catching leader Rory McIlroy: "If I want a chance I need a good start to get pressure on him. He has a commanding lead. Get off to a good start and see what happens."

    Johnson is nine under, seven shots behind McIlroy and is on the first tee-box.

  179. Post update

    Scott Drummond

    BBC Sport on-the-course reporter

    I'm very much looking forward to seeing these guys out here today and Victor, an aggressive player, is out with his driver at the first here.

    Dubuisson just drove it straight into the hay.

  180. Post update

    Victor Dubuisson is quirky isn't he? A visor, a sleeveless jacket and white pants for the hirsute Frenchman. In typically bold fashion, he goes for driver on the tight first hole and it's in the rough. Edoardo Molinari his playing partner today.

  181. Post update

    Birdie chance for Graeme McDowell on two...nope. Rolls past, couldn't read the line. Marc Leishman for birdie on four...that's how you do it Graeme. Straight in the middle of the cup.

    Leishman moves to six under, G-Mac stays on minus four. They really are packing up in a bunch in the race for second.

  182. Lowry majestic on nine

    Beautiful from Shane Lowry. The big Irishman lofts his tee shot on nine to within three feet of the pin. Not a single hole in one this week. That would have been close with a tad more juice.

    A tap-in birdie moves Lowry to six under.

  183. Post update

    Thomas Bjorn - who has twice finished tied second at the Open - taps in for a 67 and four under overall. It is a great round and good enough for tied 23rd overall.

    Henrik Stenson, one of Europe's sure-thing Ryder Cup players, ends the week three shots behind the Dane.

  184. Rory's a proven frontrunner, says Bob Rotella

    Bob Rotella (l) with twice Open champion Padraig Harrington

    Sports psychologist Bob Rotella, who worked with Padraig Harrington when he won the Open in 2008, speaking to BBC Sport on the range:

    "I think the danger is if Rory tries too hard. But I think he will stay in the present moment and play one shot at a time.

    "Given the conditions it's important he goes out and plays his game. If he plays his game he'll shoot under par today.

    "The chasing guys have got to shoot 60, 62 or something like that. I think they have the easy situation, there's no pressure on them. It's hard to get into that mindset when you're leading but I think Rory's proven in the past he can go low when out in front."

    McIlroy tees off at 14:40 BST

  185. Post update

    Around 30 minutes until we see the lead group of Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler arrive on the first tee. The start of a procession or the beginning of a huge drama?

  186. Post update

    Darren Clarke and Charl Schwartzel are in for pars on the first drag, Jim Furyk and Robert Karlsson follow them up the fairway and set up small birdie chances while Scotland's Stephen Gallagher gets birdie on five.

    The par fives will see a huge number of birdies today. A par there is a missed chance.

  187. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    Rory McIlroy

    Top golf snapper David Cannon talked me through what makes a great Open photo. He picked three of his favourites so far from this week. Here's the first:

    "I try to get the course as much as the player because links golf is so unique nowadays. For me it is what the game of golf is. The beauty of it is you get that unique rough. So for example a picture of a golfer with a huge clod of grass on the end of his club is great.

    "You try to get one picture that will sum up the whole tournament. I took one of Rory McIlroy hitting his second to the 18th on Saturday evening to set up an eagle. There are the stormy clouds, this amazing amphitheatre of the 18th and the ball up against the dark sky. It just captured his round. Two eagles in three holes, what a finish. It's the power of the still photograph, isn't it? It's there forever."

  188. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Colin McCaw: Feels like death of childhood dream seeing Tiger Woods play so poorly. Really hope he finds top(ish) form again.

  189. Post update

    Peter Alliss

    BBC Sport commentator

    Chris Wood

    "That round from Chris Wood will make people think if he can do it, I can do it. Very nice. You don't get a round much better than that."

  190. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    Mr Lancey: Probably already answered, but why have the players got black ribbons on their caps?

    The ribbons are in tribute to golf coach Bob Torrance, who died on Friday evening after a battle with cancer. Torrance helped Padraig Harrington to back-to-back Open titles in 2007 and 2008.

  191. Wood ends -6 for the day

    Our low marker for the day is in the clubhouse. Chris Wood putts for six under for the day and four under for the tournament. A superb round. No bogeys for the 26-year-old since the ninth hole of his third round.

    His playing partner Paul Casey shows Royal Liverpool his is its equal with a birdie on the last to end level par for the championship. He does that thing where the hat is taken off to acknowledge the galleries. Is anyone else as shocked at me with how different players look without a hat?

  192. Rose plays down victory chances

    Justin Rose

    Justin Rose says he is too far adrift of runaway leader Rory McIlroy to challenge for his first Open title at Royal Liverpool on Sunday.

    The world number three, who won his previous two tournaments, is five under par after a third-round 69, 11 shots behind McIlroy.

    "I've put in a good performance," said the 33-year-old.

    "It hasn't really added up to giving myself a chance tomorrow but I've been happy with the way I've played."

  193. Birdie for Howell

    David Howell rolls home a smart putt from around 20 feet for birdie on four. He is five under and with a generous par five to come. Justin Rose and Graeme McDowell through the first with pars.

  194. Post update

    Dave Green: Darren Clarke has lost a bit of timber, hasn't he?

    He has indeed Dave. Around four stone if you believe him. I read yesterday that he swaps Guinness for Gin these days as it is better for the waistline.

  195. Clarke and Schwartzel off

    Darren Clarke tees off on the first and finds a mound of rough, Charl Schwartzel - who never seems to change his facial expression - lumps his ball left with an iron. It nearly finds a spectator who dances around the mini white object in a panic.

  196. Leaderboard

    Leaderboard

    Selected scores: -6: Adam Scott (Aus); -5: Darren Clarke (NI), Graeme McDowell (NI), Justin Rose (Eng); -4: David Howell (Eng). Stephen Gallacher (Sco), Chris Wood; -3; -2: Thomas Bjorn (Den), Phil Mickelson (USA); +1: Paul Casey (Eng); +4: Luke Donald (Eng); +6: Tiger Woods (USA), Martin Kaymer (Ger)

    Selected tee times: 13:50: Darren Clarke (NI), Charl Schwartzel (SA); 14:00 Jim Furyk (USA), Robert Karlsson (Swe); 14:10: Adam Scott (Aus), Matteo Manassero (Ita), 14:20 Edoardo Molinari (Ita), Victor Dubuisson (Fra), 14:30 Dustin Johnson (USA), Sergio Garcia (Spa), 14:40 Rickie Fowler (USA), Rory McIlroy (NI)

  197. Post update

    McDowell - pretty in pink today - is in a green-side bunker on the first after a pulled fairway shot. Justin Rose hits the dancefloor with a lofted iron. Around 15 feet for birdie.

    Angel Cabrera and Phil Mickelson - five under and three under respectively - will have birdie putt on 11 after rock-solid approach shots.

    Cabrera carded 76 on day one. One wonders what position he would be in had he not thrown away four shots in the opening four holes.

  198. Post update

    Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell (-5) on BBC One: "The weather has played a huge part in the tournament. Beautiful skies today, a bit of a breeze, pins look accessible. It looks like low numbers are available.

    "Rory is controlling his own destiny. That finish last night was a statement of intent. He is a class player and no one would be surprised to see him with the Claret Jug. A big day ahead for him though, some class players with a possibility of making a move."

  199. Post update

    Not sure about Justin Rose's sunglasses. They are very square. He rips a tee-shot down the first fairway and at five under, will harbour hopes of a great finish here. Graeme McDowell is his playing partner and also finds the slice of fairway visible from the tee box. Two US Open champions on the march.

  200. Open Moments - 1970

    Doug Sanders misses a three-foot putt on the 18th green at St Andrews in the 1970 Open

    A three-foot putt for the Open. Your one and only shot at a major win in a whole career. It was that simple for American Doug Sanders in 1970.

    His miss on the 18th at St Andrews has become part of golfing legend and allowed Jack Nicklaus to win the eighth of his 18 majors after an 18-hole play-off the next day.

    "If I had made that putt, all the endorsements, the clothing lines, the golf-course designs…" Sanders lamented. "It's like buying a lottery ticket worth $200m and then dropping it in the can and watching the numbers wash away."

    For more great Open moments, check out our feature.

  201. Post update

    Roger Mullin: So Tiger Woods finishes 6 over par. Amazing to think Rory McIlroy could have a last round of 92 and still beat him! Changed days.

    John McMenemy: Got a feeling Rory might collapse today; though hope for his dad and pal's sake he doesn't or no Xmas pressie for him.

  202. Trouble for some

    You're in a great position in a major championship, you go to bed the night before with a smile on your face and then a double bogey on the first slaps you in the face. Scotland's Marc Warren knows the feeling. A bad start.

    George Coetzee certainly cannot be accused of not shouting fore. Bellows it. The horrible seventh hole is going to take some of his five under par booty away.

    At least Bristol's Chris Wood is thriving. Three birdies in a row, it's four under for the championship. Nice.

  203. Fashion show

    And while we are going all Gok Wan and highlighting wardrobe choices, Rickie Fowler is grey pants and orange shirt.

    He keeps up his tradition of wearing Oklahoma State University colours for the final day of a major.

  204. Rory hitting balls

    Rory is on the range. White cap, grey shirt, pink sleeves. He has been very high-vis this week.

    A reminder that a 66 today would see him beat the lowest ever fourth-round score in the Open Championship - currently held by Greg Norman who carded 267 in 1993.

  205. Tour de Hoylake: No Open pass no matter for one eager spectator

    BBC Sport's Tom Fordyce on Twitter: No ticket for the final round of the Open? Want a gander at the action on the 4th green? Get on your bike instead.

    Ticketless golf fans at the Open
  206. Post update

    Cabrera clumps an iron on the par three ninth. Lofted, his ball returns with a bit of cloud on it and sticks to earth. Around 12 feet from another birdie. Francesco Molinari doesn't hit a birdie attempt on the sixth green. Five under. David Howell does the same on two. Four under. Hit them lads, what have you got to lose at this stage?

  207. Birdies for Bjorn and Cabrera

    Thomas Bjorn makes another birdie on 14, he is three under, four under for the day and a shot off levelling the best round of Sunday so far. Nice stuff from the big Dane. Speaking of big, Angel Cabrera rolls in from six feet and gives the camera a little wave. Three birdies in eight holes and minus four overall. Loveable look about him, walks with a bounce.

  208. Post update

    Frank Nobilo

    Former European Tour golfer on BBC TV

    "A story of Tiger's week, sixes and fives, but he did make the cut, which many didn't. He might not have enjoyed the week but it is good having him back in the picture."

  209. Tiger ends +6

    Par for Tiger on the last via the thick rough. Dufner makes birdie, using the grandstand to hold his approach shot to the green. I guess how wayward they were shows how giving the final drag could be today.

    Tiger looked like being the story after a 69 on round one didn't he? Sluggish rounds of 77, 73 and 75 returned us to reality as the 14-time major winner ends plus six in his first major since back surgery earlier this year.

    Dufner, who will defend his USPGA title next month, ends one over for the tournament.

  210. Tiger on the last

    Tiger Woods

    What for Tiger Woods? The most talented player ever according the the legendary Gary Player, Woods is plodding up the 18th alongside Jason Dufner. It feels odd seeing him blend in to a list of also rans.

    The pair have both pumped iron shots left of the final green with Dufner's wallop almost flattening a marshal. The ball crashed into the grandstand. Golf meets ten pin bowling.

    Dufner is two over, Woods four worse off.

  211. Low markers

    Cheers Ben. You were as consistent as Tom Watson there.

    So where are we? Scores are out there it seems, with five under for the day the lowest marks at present. Brendon Todd and Koumei Oda the hot men.

    If Rickie Fowler could follow suit we may have some drama.

  212. Post update

    Young Matsuyama makes birdies at eight, nine and 10 to get to two under, and here's Luke Reddy for the next couple of hours, see you in a bit.

  213. Post update

    Former Open champion Darren Clarke talking on BBC One: "Today is a different day, a different wind direction and no-one has seen it before. Someone will have to play very well to stand a chance but Rory in this form is going to be very difficult to catch."

    Clarke tees off at 13:50 BST on five under.

  214. Post update

    Sorry about that, Tiger Woods was playing the 17th, not the 18th as I said. He's one of only 12 players over par today, it's been a grind for the last three days. Shane Lowry should have another birdie at the third, but his ball has a look before taking fright and jumping out of the hole.

  215. Watch the landmines Rory, says five-time champion Tom Watson

    Tom Watson

    Tom Watson, 64, spoke to BBC Sport after carding a four-under-par 68 to finish +1 for the tournament and had some advice for runaway leader Rory McIlroy, the 25-year-old who is seeking a first Claret Jug:

    "The course is there for the taking but, as with all links courses, he needs to avoid the landmines."

    Watson was particularly impressed by McIlroy's father Gerry's bold step of putting £400 at 500-1 on the then 15-year-old winning the Open before he was 26. The twice major champion turned 25 in May.

    "That's beautiful, I like the confidence his father had when he was 15. That's a good story."

    Watson will bow out of the Open championship next year at St Andrews but his love of links golf will seemingly never die.

    "It's an honour to walk up there and especially at my age to get applause like that. I take it very seriously and I played very well today. Maybe that's a sign of things to come at Porthcawl next week for the British Senior Open."

  216. Post update

    Oda doesn't hit his birdie putt on 18 but that's a round of 67, with eight birdies and a triple on his card. There's a low one out there somewhere. Woods on 18, with a 15-footer for birdie - doesn't hit it and that's a round of 75 for +6 overall.

  217. Post update

    Fine recovery by Mickelson at five and he rams home a birdie to get to three under. Cabrera matching him blow for blow at the moment, he does the same. Offaly's Shane Lowry has birdied the second to get to four under, and currently tied for 19th place.

  218. Justin Rose senses a 64 in the field today

    England's Justin Rose (-5) chatting with BBC Sport on the range: "There's always something to play for. I've played well, I just haven't had that hot run yet. I think there is a score out there today with the course being softer. I think you could shoot 64.

    And how about Rory McIlroy's chances of winning a third major?

    "With his power, if he can take care of the par fives out there today he can still make a lot of mistakes and win."

    McIlroy eagled the par-five 16th and 18th yesterday to put daylight between himself and the rest.

  219. Brendon Todd, clubhouse lead on -1

    Koumei Oda curls in another birdie on 17 and a birdie at the last would give him a 66. F Molinari makes a birdie at two and he's now four under, a mere 12 shots off the lead. Brendon Todd in with a 67 for -1 overall and the clubhouse lead.

  220. Post update

    Keegan Bradley about to hit away at the first and he clips one down there with an iron. He's playing with fellow American Chris Kirk, who carded a 68 yesterday and is on the verge of making the Ryder Cup team, despite this being his Open debut.

  221. 'See you at St Andrews, Tom'

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Watching Tom Watson play up the 18th in what will be his penultimate Open (unless he wins at St Andrews next year in a fairytale even more unbelievable than if he had won at Turnberry in 2009).

    "Generous and heartfelt reception for the 64-year-old five-time Open champion. The clapping starts before he even reaches the crosswalk before the green, and the gallery stands as one as he enters the U-shaped arena.

    "Chuckles all around when his caddie can't get the flag out of the hole and has to kick it. Watson makes his par for a 68, only four off his age, and there are shouts of 'Captain Tom', 'We love you, Tom' and 'See you in St Andrews'. Watson does his wide-mouthed grin, raises his cap and strolls off, the oldest man to make cut at Open."

  222. Post update

    Sweden's Henrik Stenson finishing strong, he's birdied 10 to get to red figures. Mickelson birdies three to get to two under, Cabrera also picks up a shot to join him on that number. Woods stumbling along, he's four over for the day through 15.

  223. Post update

    Ken Brown

    BBC Sport commentator

    "What a round by Uncle Tom. A fantastic performance. He is still going strong at 64 and will be back next year."

  224. Get involved

    #bbcgolf

    We've been asking for memories of horror sporting collapses, and plenty have come in. Rory, if you're reading, look away now:

    Henry Hitchen: Bradford Bulls 30-0 up at HT vs Wigan. 31-30 FT to Wigan in the Play-Offs.

    Steven Humphrey: Charlton 7-6 Huddersfield, 1957. Huddersfield were winning 5-1 with 30 mins to go. Only pro side ever to score 6 & lose!

    United Debate: McEnroe vs Lendl in the Roland Garros final following his fight with the camera man!

    And one golf one, of course...

    James Blake: Nick Faldo v Greg Norman. Final day Masters, Norman 6 ahead, loses by 5... Faldo 67 Norman 78.

  225. Watson birdies the 18th

    Tom Watson's eagle putt on 18 stays just right but that'll be a four-under 68 and the clubhouse lead on one over. Of course, we'll see him at Gleneagles in September as skipper of the US team. Francesco Molinari and George Coetzee make birds at the first...

  226. Post update

    Mickelson from about 20 feet, for three at the third... shaves the cup left, makes par. Bjorn gets back to two under courtesy of a birdie at 10, here's Tom Watson making his way to the 18th green - standing ovation, he's got a four for a 68 and the clubhouse lead on two over par.

  227. Post update

    Mickelson opened up with two pars and here's a runner onto the third, we haven't seen many of those this week. Italy's Francesco Molinari and George Coetzee of South Africa are safely away at the first. Cabrera with a sweet chip at the third, should make three straight pars.

  228. Leaderboard

    lEADERBOARD

    Selected scores: -6: Adam Scott (Aus); -5: Darren Clarke (NI), Graeme McDowell (NI), Justin Rose (Eng); -4: David Howell (Eng). Stephen Gallacher (Sco); -1 Thomas Bjorn (Den), Phil Mickelson (USA); +1: Paul Casey (Eng); E: Luke Donald (Eng); +2: Tom Watson (USA); +6: Tiger Woods (USA); +7: Martin Kaymer (Ger)

    Selected tee times: 13:40:Justin Rose (Eng), Graeme McDowell (NI); 13:50: Darren Clarke (NI), Charl Schwartzel (SA); 14:00 Jim Furyk (USA), Robert Karlsson (Swe); 14:10: Adam Scott (Aus), Matteo Manassero (Ita), 14:20 Edoardo Molinari (Ita), Victor Dubuisson (Fra), 14:30 Dustin Johnson (USA), Sergio Garcia (Spa), 14:40 Rickie Fowler (USA), Rory McIlroy (NI)

    Full leaderboard and tee times.

  229. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    "Waiting in the grandstand behind 18 for the arrival of Tom Watson, and for the photographers it's turning into a game of Escape from Colditz.

    "The two marshals at the front of the stand are pacing up and down, slowly and deliberately at regular intervals. For the snappers in the back row, it's a case of timing the guards' movements and then going for it when they are out of sight and the frame is clear."

  230. Post update

    The wiry Englishman Chris Wood birdies 10 to get back into the red, he's -3 today. Brendon Todd! Pops in from off the green for an eagle at 16, he's five under today and -1 for the championship. Tom Watson on 18 and he whistles one down the middle, never been anything wrong with his long game.

  231. Past Open champions

    Padraig Harrington
  232. Post update

    Bogey for Bjorn at nine, he's out in 33. Birdies for American DA Points at two, four and five, he's now two under and lowest on the course. Kevin Stadler, who won his first PGA Tour title recently at his 239th attempt, has had a decent week, he's -1 for the week through four.

  233. Post update

    Tom Watson birdies 16 and he's now three under for the day and two over for the tournament, the old fella is nothing short of a marvel. Another birdie for Thomas Bjorn at eight, the Dane moves to two under, best on course.

  234. Post update

    I'm sure I'm not the only one but I do find some of the coverage of Tiger Woods rather baffling. Yep, he's having a bit of a rough few days but he's only just back from injury and he won five times last year, when he last had any kind of fitness. Had Phil Mickelson missed the cut this week people would have just put it down to one of those things, a rusty Woods makes the cut and people are picking him apart under their microscopes. Anyway...

  235. Post update

    Rob Hodgetts

    BBC Sport at Hoylake

    Seve Ballesteros

    "Been chatting to renowned golf photographer David Cannon of Getty Images about his iconic picture of Seve Ballesteros winning the Open at St Andrews in 1984.

    "That, to me, sums up the Open Championship and his career in one image," said Cannon, now on his 32nd Open as an official snapper. "I was pretty young, it was only my third Open, and Seve had always been my hero. I knew that putt could be a great moment, so I threw away half a roll of film - about 15 frames - and put in a fresh roll.

    "When it dropped there was a massive fist pump and then he turned around to where I was sitting. I was just lucky to be in the right spot, and he punched the air for a number of seconds. I looked at the other photographers and knew they'd run out of film before he punched the air.

    "He made it a tattoo on his arm. That must be the highest honour, to have your picture turned into a tattoo on the subject's arm. That's pretty amazing."

  236. Post update

    Luke Donald

    Laser show from Luke Donald at the moment, right at the pin at six. Zach going with five iron from 205 yards, short, choppy swing but that's another goodun. They're tearing round at the moment, the first pair took about three hours to complete their rounds, which is good to see.

  237. Post update