Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Spieth Seeks Open Repeat; American's Win in Australia in 2014 Was the Launchpad to One of the Great Seasons of Golf

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Spieth Seeks Open Repeat; American's Win in Australia in 2014 Was the Launchpad to One of the Great Seasons of Golf

Article excerpt

JORDAN Spieth is hoping to harness the Stonehaven Cup's powers as a great redeemer and use victory in the Australian Open as a catapult back to the extraordinary heights of his 2015 season.

Spieth is back for his third consecutive tilt at the Australian Open and though many baulk at the long flight, the Texan needed little convincing to return to Sydney.

For an American athlete, the 23-year-old not only has a refreshing appreciation for world travel but Spieth is also keenly aware of just how much the Australian Open helped launch him into the upper stratosphere of world golf.

Spieth was a highly promising young golfer when he first teed up in the Australian Open in 2014 but after turning professional 18 months beforehand, the rookie had still only won a single tournament.

Up against a field containing Rory McIlroy and Adam Scott, Spieth turned on a display of utter dominance at the Australian Golf Club and on a windy final day, he shot 63 to win.

The performance announced Spieth as one of the world's best.

But when he followed it up with victory the next week in Florida, and won another five tournaments in 2015 - including the US Masters and the US Open - Spieth wasn't just one of the best, he was the best.

With 15 top 10s in his 25 starts, Spieth broke the record for the most prizemoney in a season by hauling in more than $A18million.

And a big reason why, according to Spieth, was that final-round 63 in Sydney.

"It was one of the best rounds I've ever played," he said.

"As a springboard, I went and played I think the best golf I've ever played for a four-day stretch the next week at Tiger's event in Orlando. We were on point that week. I even played better golf there than I would say even at Hyundai this past year and it was because that final round did a lot for me.

"I learnt how to really close a tournament. And then we went into '15 and did that a few times.

"So it was big, any time you can close a tournament like that. …

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