Can Jordan Spieth land a second Masters title at Augusta this week?
07 Apr 2021 08:01 am, by YorkshireSquare
Jordan Spieth’s rise to the top of golf was sensational. At just 19 years of age he won his maiden PGA Tour event, whilst just one year later he finished runner-up at the Masters and made his Ryder Cup debut. It was in 2015 that he peaked, however. He won the Masters, the US Open and the FedEx Cup en route to becoming World No.1. A victory in the 2017 Open Championship followed.
But since then, there hasn’t really been much to note, and Spieth has largely failed to live up to the hype that once followed him everywhere he went. In fact, his recent victory at the Texas Open, where he beat Charley Hoffman by two strokes, put to bed a four-year winless streak, which resulted in him dropping out of the top 100 in the world, and there’s no doubt that Spieth will be keen to kick off a second lease of life to his career from here.
The victory in his home state of Texas at TPC San Antonio couldn’t have come at a better time either. With the Masters teeing off on Thursday, Spieth now heads to Augusta National in good stead. Form and momentum are key at the prestigious tournament and nobody will be brimming with more confidence than the 27-year-old.
The pressure of winning his first tournament in four years has now been lifted and Spieth will go to Augusta with more freedom and less weight on his shoulders than ever before. However, by no means will he be flying under the radar when he makes his way to the first tee.
That victory in Texas has resulted in his golf US Masters odds being slashed to as short as 10/1, making him the third favourite behind only Bryson DeChambeau, who is now the market leader at 17/2, and defending champion Dustin Johnson (9/1), who missed the Texas-based event to sharpen his game ahead of the Masters after a disappointing run of form.
Now for Spieth, it’s about getting back to the dizzy heights that he revelled in five or six years ago. The Texas Open victory needs to propel him back to the top of the world and the 27-year-old is focusing on ‘taking the next step’ now that he has finally ended that dreaded four-year spell.
"It's pretty awesome when I look back and think there's a next level I've been at that I'm still searching for right now," Spieth said on Sunday. "It's about refocusing here and taking the next step.”
It might be too little too late for Spieth to get his head around the upcoming Masters after the victory in Texas. Phil Mickelson was the last professional to win an event and follow it up with the Masters immediately afterwards, and that was back in 2006.
When Spieth arrived at Augusta on Monday, he was quick to admit that he likes the progress he has made, but whilst he is going in the right direction, he admitted that he doesn’t yet have a proper grasp on his game yet.
"I like the progress that I'm making. I don't feel like I have the control of all facets of the game that I want to have yet, but I feel like I'm working in the right direction,” he added. "Will that make a difference this week? I don't know. But I'm going to try to be just a little better than I was last week."
Augusta is a course that Spieth knows well. Even when his game hasn’t been at its best, he has never missed the cut in the Masters and with this new-found confidence, he is certainly one to watch in Georgia this week.