Shaun Norris of South Africa walks behind Tiger Woods along the 15th fairway at Carnoustie on Saturday. Photo: Alastair Grant/AP

CARNOUSTIE – South African Shaun Norris said his playing partner Tiger Woods is back to playing his best golf following the third round of The Open at Carnoustie Golf Links on Saturday.

Both players were tied on level par starting the round.

Woods shot five-under 66, while Norris carded a respectable two-under 69 in an atmosphere unlike any other he had experienced before.

“He’s (Woods) on top of his game again. He’s swinging it well again. He’s putting well too and heading in the right direction,” said Norris.

“Like Russell Knox said, it’s like playing with a mythical creature. It doesn’t feel real.”

Norris, ranked 125th in the world, played with the American 14-time major champion for the first time and predicted his rise back to the top of world golf was imminent.

“He’s very close, I wouldn’t put it past him to come out in the next couple of months really firing.

“He’s really started to roll the ball well (on the greens), and he’s hitting the ball exceptionally. Give it time, and he’ll be back right at the top in a couple months.

“I think he’s got a great chance tomorrow, if he hits the ball the way he did on the first nine today. He actually left a couple shots out there today.” 

Woods was tied for the lead after 14 holes, which moved up the intensity surrounding the two-ball. 

“It was amazing when he tied the lead. He is really hitting the ball well. He’s not far from taking on everyone on again.

SA’s Shaun Norris earlier in the week at Carnoustie. Photo: Michael Sherman/African News Agency/ANA

“It was crazy – crazy to think so many people can follow one person. There were probably a couple holes where people were standing 15 to 20 deep on his side.

“That was definitely something I’m not used to.”

African News Agency (ANA)