A couple of weeks prior to the Masters, Jordan Spieth’s name was not one you would have expected to see towards the top of the leaderboard, nor was he well backed to feature in the upper regions of the field in the golf betting online. Yet, following a victory at the Texas Open in the final tournament before the Augusta National-based major, there was a newfound belief and the 27-year-old was propelled into the limelight.
That one victory resulted in his outright odds being slashed and suddenly he was the name on the lips of golf tipsters all around the world. However, realistically, to go on and win the Masters for a second time was going to be no easy feat for Spieth.
That two-stroke victory over Charley Hoffman at TPC San Antonio in his home state of Texas was his first tournament win in four years. And, whilst he would have undoubtedly breathed a sigh of relief as he put that drought to bed, to go and win a tournament like the Masters immediately afterwards would have been too much to ask.
The main thing for Spieth would have been to ensure that he didn’t let his form slip at Augusta and that he remained in contention. Golf is a sport where one bad tournament or even just one bad shot can result in things spiralling out of control, and for someone like Spieth, who is trying to rebuild their career from an almighty low, it was crucial he had a good Masters – and he did.
He finished an impressive tied for third alongside fellow American Xander Schauffele on seven under par, which was just three strokes behind winner Hideki Matsuyama, and it would be harsh to have expected more from Spieth at Augusta just because he won in Texas seven days prior, especially as his career is finally on an upward trajectory after dropping out of the top 100 and not winning a tournament in almost half a decade.
Spieth admitted that he felt ‘some mental fatigue’ at the end of the tournament, but overall, he can be happy with his performance, even if there are still some improvements that need to be made.
“I'm tired,” Spieth said. “I felt some mental fatigue for sure and made a couple of bonehead mistakes over the weekend, just from, I think, maybe the long stretch. But all in all, certainly another good finish here.
“I wish that I had the control of my swing that I hope is coming or I think is coming soon because it would have made things a little easier this week, and I did strike the ball really well. I hit a lot of fairways. I put myself in position to hit a lot of greens, and distance control is a strength of mine with iron play, and I did a good job of that.”
There is still a long way to go before Spieth is well and truly back to the level he was at when he first broke onto the scene. However, he’s on the right tracks and another top 5 finish at the Masters will give him a much-needed boost in his pursuit to getting back to the top of the world.