Jordan Spieth has put his Masters meltdown behind him.
The two-time Major champion, speaking after playing a practice round at Oakmont ahead of next month’s US Open, said he would be able to enjoy his next big victory even more “having experienced the other side of it”.
Asked how he got over the defeat, which saw him lose a four-shot lead at the turn to Yorkshire’s Danny Willett after a quadruple bogey seven on the 12th at Augusta National, the 22-year-old said: “75 percent you have to do it yourself; and then 25 percent relying on my team, family, friends.
“And then mentors, messages I get from mentors, pretty much saying, hey, you’ve been in contention six out of the last eight majors, won a couple of them. Something like that; the wrong miss at the wrong time is bound to happen at some point. Whether you still win that major not.
“I had the same exact miss at the US Open last year. On 17 I made double-bogey and kind of squeaked it out at the end, but that was potentially the same kind of experience as the Masters. You’re going to be on the good end and bad end.
“If you’re in it enough, you’re going to be on the good end and bad end of those situations, so keep putting ourselves in contention, and when we’re on the good end again, I’ll be able to enjoy it even more having experienced the other side of it.”
Worth the hype
Spieth said Oakmont, which is getting set to host its ninth US Open, had “passed the hype” test.
He added: “What a great test of golf and a very tough but fair test of golf. You can already tell, we had a great experience, played 27 holes, played the back nine yesterday evening and 18 holes this morning. So had a lot of fun with it and it’s going to be a great U.S. Open this year I think.”
Spieth travelled without regular caddie Michael Greller, taking the services of a local bag man.
“I had Danny who caddies out here and has for a little while, and was very helpful,” he explained. “Same with Jim who hosted us, they were both very helpful in pointing out different slopes on the greens – keep your eye out for short-sided shots and how a lot of these greens, quite a few of them, pitch front to back, which is unusual.
“I learned a lot. I learned a lot off just playing a round and a half here. I have different impressions from what I already knew. These bunkers here may as well be bunkers in the UK. They may as well be pot bunkers. You just kind of have to hit sideways out of them for the most part.
“So they are very much hazards and you really don’t need a lot of drivers. I don’t think either of those points were of importance until playing it.”