By Tony Jimenez
HOYLAKE England (Reuters) - Tiger Woods lamented a succession of errors after the former world number one slumped to a one-over-par 73 on a good day for scoring in the third round of the British Open on Saturday.
The decision by the organizers to bring forward the start time to avoid the heavy rain and thunderstorms that were forecast proved a good one as the softer fairways and greens and the still wind led to a total of 17 sub-70 rounds being carded.
Woods, however, was unable to take advantage as he slipped to a tie for 58th position on 219, three over par.
"I made a lot of mistakes," he told reporters at Royal Liverpool. "On top of that I missed a lot of shots for opportunities for birdies."
The 14-times major champion made inroads on par at the first, ninth, 10th, 11th and 16th but his progress was halted by a double-bogey six at the second, a triple-bogey seven at the seventh and another dropped shot at the par-three 15th.
Woods is competing in only his second tournament since undergoing back surgery in March and believes his game is going in the right direction.
"I'm starting to get the flow of the round, the flow of playing again," said the 38-year-old American.
"But you just can't run up high scores like that and expect to contend especially when the conditions are this benign.
"Most of the scores are three-under-par or better today and I certainly didn't do that."
Woods, who is now ranked seventh in the world, took time out to pay tribute to Scottish coach Bob Torrance who died on Friday at the age of 82.
"I've known Bob a lot over the years," he said. "Even from my amateur days when I came over here.
"He was fantastic to me. We've had a lot of great conversations about golf. It was always fun picking his brain about the game... I'm going to miss him very much."
(Editing by Rex Gowar)