Jordan Spieth looks to get on track at Ryder Cup after unplanned break

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Jordan Spieth looks to get on track at Ryder Cup after unplanned break

2018 Ryder Cup

Jordan Spieth looks to get on track at Ryder Cup after unplanned break

SAINT-QUENTIN-EN-YVELINES, France – Jordan Spieth counts his opening shot at the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles as the most nerve-wracking and coolest tee shot of his career. He was a rookie on foreign soil and soaked up every second. If anything, Spieth believes players sometimes understate the enormity of this event during the build-up.

“It lives up and passes its hype,” he said.

Spieth comes into his third Ryder Cup on a bit of a down note, having missed out on last week’s Tour Championship. U.S. captain Jim Furyk, however, isn’t concerned.

“I love where Jordan is actually right now,” Furyk said. “We talked a little on his week off and during the Tour Championship. One, he brings so much to the team room as a leader. For his age, he’s very mature, and all those guys kind of in his age group, when Jordan speaks, everyone seems to listen, and he’s been a great guy in our team room.”

Looking back, Spieth said he should’ve taken off more time during the playoffs.

“My game was in the best state that it had been in until BMW,” he said, “and I kind of just ran out of gas there.”

Had the forced break happened any other time of the year, Spieth would’ve looked at it as a blessing in disguise. But he wanted to be at East Lake, no question.

Instead, Spieth took the planned off week to fully rest. And then used the week of the Tour Championship to slowly progress each day. The idea, of course, is to crescendo at Le Golf National, a course he said might elicit more fist-pump pars than any previous Ryder Cup venue.

In 2014, Spieth paired with fellow rookie Patrick Reed and went 2-0-1 in both four-balls and foursomes. They carried on at Hazeltine, going 2-1-1.

But there are no guarantees that Furyk will keep them together in France. Reed played in the same group as Tiger Woods the past two days while Spieth played alongside good friend Justin Thomas, a Ryder Cup rookie.

When asked what it would be like to potentially pair with Spieth this week, Thomas likened it to playing with another buddy, Rickie Fowler, at the Presidents Cup.

“We know each other’s games well enough that you almost have another caddie if you need it,” he said. “It’s like, hey, say he hits first and he hits 7-iron, and it’s just a little short. He can look at me and say, ‘It’s a perfect 7-iron.’ He knows that.

“That may be something that doesn’t seem like a big deal to others, but it’s a pretty big deal in the grand scheme of things. I think it could be something that could be fun, but you just – you know, kind of wait and see I guess.”

Spieth, winless so far this season, said a strong Ryder Cup performance could impact his outlook on the entire 2018 season.

“Yeah, I think if I came out and played really solid golf this week, I would feel like I accomplished a lot this year,” Spieth said. “I would feel like I went to places where I needed to build back up and learn a lot from my own game, and Ryder Cup is a situation where you’re playing almost every hole with the same feel as you get on a major championship Sunday in contention.

“So to be able to put those to test, and if I can do so successfully, I’ll feel like I gained a lot out of it. The years after I’ve played in Ryder Cups have been phenomenal years for me. I look at this week as very important going forward for next season.”

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