Golf

U.S. Open 2019: Past major champions ready to track down Gary Woodland

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U.S. Open 2019: Past major champions ready to track down Gary Woodland

PEBBLE BEACH -- No, the Sunday Tiger roars won't be causing ripples in Stillwater Cove at the 2019 U.S. Open. But that doesn't mean the final round of the 2019 U.S. Open isn't set up for high drama. 

After firing a third-round 2-under-par 69, Gary Woodland leads the pack at 11-under, with Justin Rose one shot back. 

Woodland will go to bed Saturday with 18 holes standing between him and major championship glory. But securing that feat will be no easy task. 

When the final round descends on Pebble Beach, four past major champions will be within five strokes of Woodland, each looking to track down the 35-year-old and add to their own illustrious golf resumes. 

Two-time defending champion Brooks Koepka sits four shots back as does 2010 British Open winner and four-time major runner-up Louis Oosthuizen. Four-time major champion Rory McIlroy will begin the day five shots back. Rose, as mentioned, is just one shot off the pace. 

While Woodland will stand on the first tee having the Sunday lead a major for the first time, his pursuers know what they need to do to close the gap. 

"Just keep doing what I'm doing," Kopeka said on his approach to Sunday. "Obviously whatever I'm doing is working. I don't know how many back I'm going to be. Trying to be three back going into the back nine, you never know from there, see what happens. Make a couple of birdies, put some pressure on guys.

"Yeah, I feel good. I feel like if I can just make a few putts, I feel like I could be right there, right next to Gary. And it's been very close. I'm pleased how I'm playing. I'm pleased how I'm striking the ball. And I feel as confident as ever right now."

McIlroy, fresh off a Sunday-61 in last week's Canadian Open win, knows he can't go out looking to be too aggressive.

"It's definitely not a golf course or a golf tournament where you can go chasing," McIlroy said. "And, yeah, I have to -- it's -- even though I'm still a few off the lead, it's a wonderful opportunity for me to go out there and I guess try to add to my major tally.

"I've been very pleased with how I've played all week. I feel, for the most part, today I did the right things. And I need to do 18 more holes of that, but just get a little bit more out of the round tomorrow than I did today."

Rose answered every big shot Woodland made Saturday with one of his own. During his 2013 U.S. Open win, Rose trailed by two shots after the third round but was the last man standing after the carnage at Merion took out Phil Mickelson in the final round. 

The Englishman is very comfortable with where he's at. 

"One back gives me the freedom to feel like I've got everything to gain, nothing to lose," Rose said. "It's always a position that -- it doesn't mean I have to approach the day any differently, if I was one ahead. I'm close enough that I have to build my plan, build my round of golf, be disciplined.

"I'm not chasing, really, I'm so close to Gary that I have to go out and play my game tomorrow. And I think it's going to be dictated by the pin placements and the weather tomorrow as to how aggressive you can be and what it will take to win."

Oosthuizen will go into Sunday with a no-pressure mentality. 

"For us trailing, it's a little bit better feeling sort of giving it a better go," the 2010 British Open champion said. "You don't have that pressure of the lead. And just go with everything tomorrow. If you think you can take something on, take it on. And if you want to win the championship, you need to do that tomorrow."

[RELATED: McIlroy responds to idea Pebble Beach is playing easy]

Koepka is eyeing a U.S. Open three-peat. Something that hasn't been done in over 100 years. Rose, McIlroy and Oosthuizen each are looking to break long-standing major droughts. Each has the game to conquer Pebble Beach and run down Woodland on Sunday. 

A star-studded leaderboard at one of the world's most iconic venues. Sunday should be one for the books. 

Tom Brady silences Charles Barkley with insane birdie in 'The Match'

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Tom Brady silences Charles Barkley with insane birdie in 'The Match'

Tom Brady's start in "The Match" with former NFL star Peyton Manning and PGA Tour legends Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods wasn't great, leading to an endless parade of criticism on social media.

The six-time Super Bowl champion quarterback found a way to silence the haters with this remarkable shot for birdie on the seventh hole at Medalist Golf Club.

[RELATED: Warriors' Steph Curry wants in on next iteration of 'The Match' event]

Charles Barkley is part of TNT's telecast, and was in Brady's ear all the way up until he hit the shot.

Unfortunately for Brady, his pants didn't survive the hole.

Warriors star Steph Curry and former Warrior Andre Iguodala both are avid golf fans, and were just like the rest of us after seeing Brady's shot.

The San Mateo native got his mojo back, but he and his partner Mickelson have some catching up to do with Manning and Woods in control.

How to watch The Match: Tiger vs. Phil charity golf streaming, on TV

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How to watch The Match: Tiger vs. Phil charity golf streaming, on TV

The golf event we've all been waiting for is nearly upon us.

Tiger Woods vs. Phil Mickelson, Part 2 ... with a twist.

On Sunday, Tiger will team up with NFL legend Peyton Manning to take on Mickelson and six-time Super Bowl champion quarterback Tom Brady in The Match: Champions for Charity at the Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Fla.

Get ready for some epic trash talk.

Tiger and Phil squared off in the first edition of The Match back on Nov. 23, 2018 in Las Vegas, with Mickelson winning on the fourth extra hole.

Now the two championship golfers will be joined by two champion quarterbacks.

[RELATED: Manning takes perfect shot at Brady]

The stakes will be high, and the side bets should be incredible.

Here's how to watch The Match: Champions for Charity on TV and streaming online:

When: Sunday, May 24, 2020 at 3 p.m. ET/12 p.m. PT
TV: TNT
Stream: TNTdrama.com