Cameron Smith insists patience will be a virtue if he is going to win The 150th Open this weekend but is confident he has the game and the temperament to lift the Claret Jug.
The Australian compiled one of the great St Andrews rounds to take the half-way lead, sinking six birdies and an eagle in an eight-under-par 64 in Round Two.
That lifted him to 13-under-par for the Championship, the lowest score to par after 36 holes in St Andrews’ Open history, but Smith expects scoring to be much tougher this weekend.
With the threat of weekend rain rescinding, the Old Course is likely to be revert to firm and fast after morning rain softened it slightly on Friday.
And Smith, who has five top-10 finishes in majors without winning, is refusing to get carried away, despite his Friday fireworks,
“It's obviously a really good spot to be in. I feel like I've been in this spot a lot over the past couple of years, and things just haven't quite gone my way yet,” he said.
“But like I said before, I've just got to be really patient over the weekend. I think the golf course is going to get a lot harder and a lot faster. So just be patient and make good putts.
“I think I've always done a pretty good job of just treating every round the same, to be honest. I think it's going to be a really cool experience being out there.
“It has been this whole week. But I've always done a really good job of just doing the same thing, going through the same process every morning, making sure I feel the same - get on the range, hit the same shots. It's very boring, but it does the trick.”
With the wind and rain that plagued Friday’s early starters gone by the time he teed off, Smith was able to cash in on the front nine.
He knocked in a superb 47-foot birdie on the first and then rolled in further birdies from 17 and 12 feet on 2 and 3, and 29 feet on 8.
An eagle on the 614-yard par-5 14th was the highlight and set up a shot at the lowest Open round at St Andrews but four pars to finish saw him miss out by a stroke.
“I think it's just exciting to be leading The Open after a couple of days,” he added.
“I think that experience tomorrow is going to be really cool. There is a lot of Aussies in the crowd, it seems like. I had a lot of support the first couple of days and really can't wait for the next couple.
"I don't get too excited nor too angry. I like to stay in the middle there sometimes -- all the time. A lot of people say that it's boring to watch, but that's just how I go about my golf."