Jordan Spieth is the 2017 champion golfer of the year as he wins the Open Championship at Royal Birkdale. To think that he has been a professional for only five years and then to compare that to his track record is beyond impressive.
The 23-year-old made a ferocious run late on the back nine to secure this years third major. The putter was the one club that has separated him since he burst on the scene in 2015 and he used it successfully to play the last five holes in five underpar. Even more refreshing, was at one point early in the round, Jordan Spieth looked like a 12 handicapper. There were balls off his club and some 40 yards off the fairway; the pressure appeared to get the best of him.
But in the end Spieth took his 54 lead into the final round and held on to secure the impressive victory. Matt Kuchar put up a valiant effort all day as he displayed his consistent ball striking and excellent short game throughout. For a period of time early in the round, it did look like matchplay between two of the best players in golf, but the caliber of play was far from last year’s instant classic that had Phil Mickelson and Henrik Stenson playing impeccable golf, shot for shot, until the very last hole. At one point, after Spieth smashed a drive deep right into the base of a hill and in deep rough, he stood back in placed both hands on his head as if he could not comprehend what had just happened. It was a circus atmosphere as there were several delays due to Spieth missing fairways and having to scramble several times.
Professional golf and the entire 2017 golf season clearly needed a shot in the arm, especially coming off a relatively bland United States Open. The excitement was there, the tradition was there, and a new champion is clearly here. Spieth appears to be on the cusp of greatness yet again at the age of 23.