British Open 2018: Start time, TV schedule for Saturday Round 3

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If you’ve been grinding out the last two marathon days, I have some good news. You can sleep in a little bit. You can’t sleep in a lot bit, just a little bit more. After two 14.5 hour broadcasts for the first two rounds, the field has been cut down to 79 players and Golf Channel will not come on the air until three hours later on Saturday.

The Thursday-Friday coverage at the Open are the two longest broadcasts of the year. They go live from the very first tee shot at 1:30 a.m. in the eastern U.S. and don’t sign off until 4 p.m., usually as the final group is finishing up play deep into the evening in Scotland.

The full field will obviously still go off No. 1 tee, but the R&A is not exactly in a hurry to get them out there at the crack of dawn. The first tee time is not until 4:15 a.m., or 9:15 a.m. local. By that time, the sun may have allowed for three or four hours of golf if they really wanted to get crazy. But the tee sheet is set for a 3 p.m. finish back in the States, and an 8 p.m. finish on Sky Sports over in Europe. TV will always impact how the tee sheet works at these majors. There’s too much money being spent.

At this point, the R&A has the schedule pretty expertly set out. They know how the pace of play will work and know exactly when they want to have things close over the two different weekend rounds. Sunday actually finishes a little earlier, unless there’s some sort of 30-minute drop and ruling like last year with Jordan Spieth at Birkdale.

After Golf Channel had the reins for the entire first two days, NBC now comes off the bench for the weekend finish. They will be live each day at 7 a.m. and take it home into the afternoon from there. The lead team of Dan Hicks and Johnny Miller will have the call at the end, with Mike Tirico and Nick Faldo probably rotating in a bit too. Miller has hinted at retirement before and it’s unclear if he has a contract for next year, so this could conceivably be the final major he works in the tower.

So get up early on Saturday, make your coffee, and watch some major golf. You’ll have the afternoon to yourself and just know it’s nothing compared to the marathons of the previous two days. Here are your media options for Saturday at the British Open:

Saturday’s third round coverage (all times Eastern)

Television:

4:30 a.m. to 7 a.m. — Golf Channel

7 a.m. to 3 p.m. — NBC

Online streams:

4:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Golf Channel/NBC simulcast stream

4:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. — “Spotlight” coverage

5 a.m. to 3 p.m. — 3-hole stream focusing on Nos. 8 to 10

5 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Marquee groups stream

Streaming Service:

Radio:

4 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Sirius XM PGA Tour Radio (Ch. 92/208)



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