Date: April 08, 2007

Appleby stays calm

Stuart Appleby is intent on staying relaxed and enjoying the moment as he joins world No.1 Tiger Woods for Monday&aposs final round of the US Masters at Augusta. Appleby is aiming to become the first Australian in 71 editions of the Masters to claim the coveted green jacket as he takes a one-stroke lead over Woods and Englishman Justin Rose into day four. A further stroke back is Americans Vaughn Taylor and Zach Johnson, and Irishman Padraig Harrington. But not only is Appleby chasing a slice of history, he is also attempting to stop the all-conquering American from winning his third consecutive major, and fifth Masters trophy. “What do you want me to say – that I beat him up all the time, that I&aposm great on the practise range, I can hit it past him? I mean, no, no and no,” Appleby laughed. “But it&aposs gonna be a very interesting day for me. It will be a real fight. It will be very tough for me, tough for everybody. What I&aposm really gonna focus on tomorrow (Monday) is enjoying tomorrow.” “You know, when Tiger wins tournaments he&aposs not so wound up and tight and tense that he&aposs not enjoying it. I&aposve found that the best play comes from just relaxing and enjoying it and taking what comes.” “Tomorrow I&aposll just go out and try enjoy myself and understand that it&aposs a very different scenario to what the other days have been.” Appleby had taken a two-shot lead during the third round and looked set to break par for the second consecutive round before a triple-bogey on the 17th hole saw him drop back into the pack. But a par on the 18th hole saw him card a one-over 73 to head into the final round on two-over-par. “I let a couple of shots slip there for sure,” Appleby said. “There were plenty of holes I could have let more (shots) slip throughout the day. I just happened to bunch one hole up.” “I played decent all day (except for the 17th). It was a real fight out there. There are so many things you can do right, and still pay a penalty.” “Mentally, I felt pretty good, pretty comfortable, and tomorrow will be another challenging test, because the course will slap you in the head if you do anything wrong.” The Victorian is the only Australian in contention, with Geoff Ogilvy sinking to 10-over after dropping six shots in four holes to sit alongside Rod Pampling, while Aaron Baddeley is 11-over and Adam Scott 12-over.