2017 The Open Championship: Jordan Spieth in the driving seat

Brendon Netto 10:20 23/07/2017
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Jordan Spieth will learn from his Masters collapse as well as his major triumphs as he tries to secure the third leg of the career grand slam in the Open Championship.

A second bogey-free 65 of the week means Spieth will take a three-shot lead over Matt Kuchar into Sunday’s final round at Royal Birkdale, with US Open champion Brooks Koepka three shots further back alongside 20-year-old Canadian Austin Connelly.

Victory on Sunday would make Spieth only the second player after Jack Nicklaus to have won three of the game’s four majors before the age of 24 and he could then surpass Tiger Woods as the youngest player to complete a career grand slam in next month’s US PGA at Quail Hollow.

However, the 23-year-old American is well aware that memories of his collapse in the final round of the 2016 Masters, where he blew a five-shot lead with nine holes to play, remain fresh in the memory

“I’ve had a five-shot lead in a major and squandered it before,” said Spieth, who won the Masters and US Open in 2015 and missed out on a play-off for the Open at St Andrews by a single shot.

“I’ve had the high and the humbling so I will keep my head down and not get ahead of myself.

“I think I’m in a position where it can be very advantageous, just everything I’ve gone through, the good, the bad and everything in the middle. I understand that leads can be squandered quickly, and I also understand how you can keep on rolling on one.

“It was a humbling experience that I thought at the time could serve me well going forward. And if I don’t win tomorrow, it has nothing to do with that. It has to do with it was someone else’s day, and I didn’t play as well as I should have.

“And if I win tomorrow it has nothing to do with that, either. You’re learning and it all goes into the mental process.

“Tomorrow will be a day that will be emotionally draining and difficult to stay very neutral in the head, but that’s probably the most important thing for me to do.”

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