TPC Sawgrass, and the Players Championship is not typically a friendly place for first-timers, but Jordan Spieth is making it look easy. Let’s face it, this kid came to the PGA Tour to play, and stands a good chance of breaking the rules this year. Everytime I looked at the leaderboard on Friday, he was making up another stroke on leader, Martin Kaymer, and needed only one more birdie to get there.
Spieth fired another bogey-free 65 on Friday, and will play alongside the 2010 PGA Champ on Saturday afternoon when action gets underway. The youngster has not made a bogey in 36 holes at the Mean Deane Dome designed by Pete Dye to fully test a professional golfer’s game. I think he is passing his first test.
You would have thought the 20 year-old Texan would be licking his wounds from the beat-down he took from Bubba Watson on Sunday at Augusta, but here he is again. Back in contention, and with another opportunity to win his second golf tournament.
2010 US Open Champ, Graeme McDowell got a first-hand look at the youngster during the first two rounds at Ponte Vedra, and was impressed with what he saw from this young phenom.
“He’s just a very, very solid player, doesn’t do anything wrong,” said Graeme McDowell, who spent the last two days playing alongside Spieth. “He’s got all the tools.”
Jordan Spieth seems to approach the game without any tension. He’s gotten upset a couple of times, but seems to have learned from his mistakes. He is a continuous grinder, and a fierce competitor who doesn’t seem to be rattled by anything going on around him.
He doesn’t agonize over his swing, he plays the right shot at the right time. and he is an excellent putter. What more does one need to be successful on the PGA Tour? Kind of reminds you of a young Tiger Woods.
“Jordan has never had a gear that he shifts into where he gives up,” his coach Cameron McCormick said via cell phone. “He’s a competitor to the finish line. It doesn’t matter what he’s doing. He’s a fighter, that’s heart. You can’t teach that.
“Even going back to his youth golf, whenever he took a step up in performance level he would always take that step and never feel out of place. It’s a real bullet-proof approach.”
Spieth ranks second in his approach shot distance to the pin and for a second straight day hit 11 of 14 fairways and 13 of 18 greens in regulation. He even had the same number of putts. When asked how he wants to approach the final 36 holes at one of the toughest venues on the PGA Tour:
“Very stress‑free,” Spieth said. “I’d like to have a round like that the next two days.”
There’s one thing for sure. If Jordan Spieth can get through the final 36 holes at TPC Sawgrass like he did the first 36, in bogey-free golf, he stands a good chance of breaking the rules and become the first, first-time winner of the Players Championship.