TIGER WOODS surged into contention at the Open with a red-hot round of 66 – sending fans and even his rivals wild.
Ian Poulter – once branded a "d***" by Woods – tweeted: "I can’t say I’ve ever been so excited for @TigerWoods before.. If he can pull this off it would be “stuff dreams are made of” #Respect #GOAT."
The 14-time Major lit up brutal Carnoustie with his five-under score, sending himself into a share of the lead after birdieing the par-five 14th.
That was the first time since the second round of the 2013 Masters that Woods has been at the top of the leaderboard in a Major.
He finished four shots back from the leading trio of Jordan Spieth, Kevin Kisner and Xander Schauffele on nine under par when it was all said and done on day three.
And the 42-year-old American, who only returned to golf in December after make-or-break spinal fusion surgery, sent supporters into overdrive.
One said: "Absolutely relished watching childhood hero Tiger Woods play so well today. Times where he’s looked back to his best."
Another posted: "Tiger Woods – is this really happening?"
One comment read: "Ever look at Tiger Woods high on an Open leaderboard and think, a year ago this guy had a recently-fused back, couldn’t walk or get out of bed and was battling addiction to subscription pain medication?"
A fellow user said: "Tiger Woods. Hands down the best sportsperson to ever live."
Another posted: "Tiger Woods winning a major in 2018 is needed in my life."
One social media user wrote: "I don't know much about Golf but if Tiger Woods manages to win the Open that would be one of the greatest comebacks in sport!"
Another said: "Never ever thought I'd root for Tiger Woods… but this is awesome."
Woods' 66 was his lowest round in a Major since the second round of the 2011 Masters, some 2,660 days ago.
It was his best round in the Open for 12 years despite a bogey on the par-three 16th being his only mistake all day.