With thunderstorms and heavy rain never arriving, the historic decision to use a two-tee start at the British Open on Saturday appeared to be misguided.

Yet players finishing their third rounds at Royal Liverpool were generally accepting of the unprecedented schedule change that saw half the field begin on the 10th hole.

Graeme McDowell, one of the early finishers, says ''the decision to play two tees looks a bit interesting now ... but better to be safe than sorry, I guess.''

Former champion Darren Clarke says he used bad language when he was informed late on Friday of the two-tee start, but says ultimately ''it looks like they've made the perfect call.''

There were only intermittent outbreaks of rain and barely any wind at Hoylake. The leaders were due to finish three hours earlier than usual on a Saturday at the British Open.