THEY call it moving day but Crazy Phil Mickelson took it to the extreme and shaved five shots in three holes to be one off the lead going into the final day of the 2010 US Masters.
Mickelson had back to back eagles on the 13th and 14th and missed what would have been a record breaking third by a whisker to shoot a third round 67 and finish just one behind leader Lee Westwood, who is on 12 under.
Tiger Woods had a good start but struggled with his ball striking and putting in the middle of his round.
He fought back with a string of birdies on the back nine to be looming just four strokes behind the leader.
Fred Couples is also still in contention after a 68 which put him one behind Woods and playing partner K J Choy, who are on 8 under.
In one scintillating half hour or so, Mickelson shot his back to back eagles (only ever done twice before at the Masters) and birdie, Woods had three birdies in a row and Couples chipped in for an eagle.
“I haven’t played this well for a long time,” Mickelson said later, excited to be in contention and in the last grouping on the final day of the Masters.
Woods too was excited to be in contention saying: “I’m in good shape.”
Though he admitted he had struggled at times during the round and “three putting three times doesn’t feel like normal.”
Couples was feeling his age somewhat with his long time troublesome back tightening up at times and being unable to grab a buggy as is sometimes available on the Champions Tour.
“This thing is a beast to walk,” he said. “One more day and hopefully I can get through it.”
Still, he said, he was feeling confident and striking the ball well.
“I just love this place. I have a shot at it tomorrow, if I can shoot a crazy score, and we’ll see what happens.’’
The Australians didn’t fare so well with only Geoff Ogilvy in red figures at one under.
With a late fightback and birdies on 16 and 18 Ogilvy finished with a three under 69.
Adam Scott promised much early on with two birdies on the front nine but unfortunately went in the other direction, with three late bogeys putting him back to even.
Australian television coverage starts at 3.45 am AEST on TEN, though you probably won’t see a live ball struck till 4.15 am if you want to stay in bed that little while longer.
Due to a motorcycle race, coverage on ONE HD doesn’t begin till 7.15 am.