Jordan Spieth Says He Won at Pebble Beach with Boring Golf
Boring golf. That was how Jordan Spieth characterized his final round during his interview by Golf Channel after his AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am victory.
Jordan Spieth said his Sunday round at Pebble Beach was “boring golf.” Coming the day after he had just 23 putts and shot a 65, it was a fairly amazing statement.
However, at the end of 54 holes, Jordan Spieth was six shots ahead of his nearest competitor, and he said playing “boring golf” was probably a good way to secure a victory. Winning was the goal, of course. He did not need to score a 10 on a double back flip with two-and-a-half-twists. He just needed to not screw up between the first tee and the 18th green.
It’s harder mentally than one might think.
“I remember watching highlights of Tiger trying to hold his bogey-free round when he had such a big lead. That was kind of his goal,” Spieth said to media after his victory. “That was mine today . . . hey, let’s try and keep a clean card, let’s shoot 3-under.”
Spieth felt he was playing well enough to get the job done. After making a birdie at the second, he thought he was on his way. But his putts, like those of others in the field, were coming up short on the bumpy poa annua greens.
Despite the poa annua bumps, however, Jordan Spieth did get to 2-under par by the time he holed out.
Spieth admitted he was annoyed because his putts were not falling on Sunday like they had on Saturday.
“I got frustrated a little. Michael did a great job calming me down,” Spieth told media after he won. “It’s tough to make putts on poa annua from three plus feet. You can hit good putts that just kind of bounce or miss or whatever. So that, obviously, scared me a little bit.”
There’s More to Boring Golf Than Solid Puttting
While watching Jordan Spieth make putts is great for his fans and bad for his competitors, his ball-striking has improved more than his putting in 2017.
“Our goal for the day was to try and hit as many greens in regulation as we could. I hit 17 of them today,” he explained. “The one I missed was just a jumper out of the rough that I didn’t plan for. So it was just all-in-all tee to green exactly what I was looking for and it led to a lot of tap in pars.”
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Spieth said his ball-striking has improved and his misses in 2017 have been mostly on the green. In terms of ball striking, the AT&A Pebble Beach Pro-Am produced the best week he’s ever had to close out a tournament.
“Just been waiting for the putter to come around from those mid-range, mid-range length and it did on the middle two rounds. That was clutch. It was great,” he added. “I was able to see rounds go to 7-under versus stopping at 3- or 4-under because I just couldn’t get them to keep falling.”
The shot of the final round, as far as Jordan Spieth was concerned, came at the 8th. The fairway has a giant chasm between the second shot and the green. His drive was in the rough.
“I was very, very excited once that ball landed on the green. That was really avoiding a big number there,” he admitted. “That could have been a double or triple very, very easily, if that doesn’t come out the right way.”
Is Spieth’s Game Ready for the Masters?
Getting off to a good start with a victory already in the books for 2017 bodes well for the 2015 Masters and U.S. Open champ. Because he is hitting the ball better than he did in 2015 Spieth thinks he just needs hit putting to stay solid for as long as possible.
Looking far down the road to Augusta National, the putting will be important, as Spieth attested. But this week gives him very positive feelings.
“If you can putt well here, you can putt well just about anywhere,” he said. “I didn’t hit the ball great at the 2015 Masters. I putted out of my mind.”
For the year, Jordan Spieth has yet to post a round over par. His driving accuracy last week was 78.18 percent, , 43 of 55 fairways. Greens in regulation were 79.17 percent, 57 of 72 greens. For the week, he had 113 putts.