What about leading the British Open, with a chance at 49 to be the oldest major champion in golf history?
“Then you put the smile on the face,” he said.
If he cared to look behind him, Jimenez might have reason to be concerned.
The biggest name was Woods, already a four-time winner this year who has been steering his way around Muirfield with mainly irons that go forever on the rock-hard fairways. More ominous is that he is making so many important putts, even if they are for par.
“There will be no surprise to me if he’s picking up the claret jug on Sunday night,” said Graeme McDowell, who played with Woods and was seven shots behind. “But I’m not writing off the rest of the field. There’s quality players here in this field, and I’m certainly not writing myself off. But if he continues to play the way he’s playing, he’s going to be tough to beat.”
Westwood surged to the top of the leaderboard with a 31 on the front nine and one more birdie at the 12th, but he dropped three shots on the last six holes. Even so, he gave himself another chance to capture his first major in what already is banner sporting year for England. The last Englishman to win the British Open was Nick Faldo in 1992 at Muirfield.
“Why not enjoy it out there?” Westwood said. “It’s tough for everybody. So smile your way through.”
Angel Cabrera, among six players who had a share of the lead at one point Friday, dropped five shots over the last three holes for a 72. Even so, he was only two shots behind at 1-under 141 along with Zach Johnson, Martin Laird (71) and Rafael Cabrera-Bello (74).
Only nine players remained under par on a course that is playing to an average of just under 75.