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Woods confident despite past catch-up misery

US golfer Tiger Woods tees off on the 10th at Muirfield golf course at Gullane in Scotland on July 20, 2013
US golfer Tiger Woods tees off on the 10th during the third round of the 2013 British Open Golf Championship at Muirfield golf course at Gullane in Scotland on July 20, 2013.

Tiger Woods has never done it before, but he believes he can do it Sunday in the final round of the British Open.

All of the American's 14 major titles were won when he was either leading, or was tied for the lead going into the last 18 holes.

He has never won one when trailing as he will be at Muirfield, two strokes behind England's Lee Westwood.

After firing a one over 72 on Saturday in the company of Westwood, who had a 70, Woods said that he was happy with his position going into the final round.

"I'm pleased where I'm at. I'm only two back. There's only one guy ahead of me. And tomorrow, we'll see what they do tomorrow," said Woods.

"I've got 14 of these things (majors), and I know what it takes to win it.

"He (Westwood) has won tournaments all over the world. He knows how to win golf tournaments. He's two shots ahead and we're going to go out there and both compete and play.

"It's not just us two. There's a bunch of guys who have a chance to win this tournament. And all of us need to really play well to win it."

Woods briefly held a solo lead on Saturday when he sunk an 18-footer for birdie at the second, but he was quickly overtaken by a fiery Westwood.

The world number one got back on level terms by the turn and it looked like it might stay that way until he fired his second shot at the par-five 17th into a bunker and came away with a bogey to Westwood's birdie.

US golfer Tiger Woods reacts after missing a putt on the 10th green at Muirfield golf course in Scotland, July 20, 2013
US golfer Tiger Woods reacts after missing a putt on the 10th green during the third round of the 2013 British Open Golf Championship at Muirfield golf course at Gullane in Scotland on July 20, 2013.

That left him tied for second with Hunter Mahan and dropped him down to the penultimate pairing for Sunday in the company of Masters champion Adam Scott.

Overall though, he said he was happy with a round that saw him pluck his driver out of the bag for the first time in the tournament.

"For me I was trying to grind along and play my own game, regardless of what Lee was doing or what anyone else was doing," he said.

"This golf course is a tough test and I was just trying to execute my own game plan. And wherever that ended up, it ended up. And I ended up 1-over par, which wasn't too bad."

Again there was no sign of any discomfort with the left elbow injury which he worsened at last month's US Open and caused him to rest up until Muirfield.

And now, he was looking forward to going down the stretch on Sunday in search of a 15th major title, over five years after he won the US Open at Torrey Pines.

"I've been in this position before, in the past five years, and I've been in that hunt. And I'm in it again. Hopefully tomorrow I can play well and win the tournament."

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