The greats find a way to get it done, and Jordan Spieth’s hard-fought third major title suggests he is on an exalted path in the game of golf.
In 40 agonizing and exhilarating minutes, the 23-year-old almost blew another major in scenes reminiscent of his Masters meltdown last year, before scrapping back in majestic fashion to win the 146th Open at Royal Birkdale.
The Texan clinched his first Claret Jug by three shots from countryman Matt Kuchar to secure the third leg of the career Grand Slam of all four of golf’s big events.
Spieth’s battling 69 to end 12 under par leaves just the US PGA to become only the sixth player to complete the set, after his breakthrough win in the 2015 Masters followed two months later by the US Open.
Spieth is striving to join Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Gary Player, Nicklaus and Woods as the elite five to have won all four of the game’s big titles at some stage in their career.
“It’s a life goal of mine,” he said. “Growing up playing golf, I just wanted to be able to play in major championships and compete with the best in the world, and things have happened very quickly. And it’s good and bad, because a lot comes with it.”