Spi­eth col­lapse shocks peers

Lesotho Times - - Sport -

NEW YORK — World No 1 Ja­son Day was “ab­so­lutely shocked” while Lee West­wood pointed to the fine line be­tween suc­cess and dis­as­ter at the Masters af­ter Jor­dan Spi­eth’s as­ton­ish­ing col­lapse in Sun­day’s fi­nal round.

Amer­i­can Spi­eth, seek­ing a sec­ond con­sec­u­tive vic­tory at Au­gusta Na­tional and a third ma­jor ti­tle, was five strokes ahead be­fore he im­ploded with a bo­gey-bo­gey start to the back nine fol­lowed by a quadru­ple-bo­gey 7 at the 12th.

Though he cov­ered the last six holes in one-un­der, he had ef­fec­tively handed the Green Jacket to Englishman Danny Wil­lett as he fin­ished three shots back in a tie for sec­ond place, leav­ing the fans and his fel­low play­ers in stunned dis­be­lief.

“I was on (hole) 15 and I was ab­so­lutely shocked when I saw Jor­dan go from five (un­der) to one (un­der),” Aus­tralian Day said af­ter clos­ing with a one-over 73 to share 10th place. “It’s tough. It’s tough to win ma­jor cham­pi­onships.

“So many things and emo­tions, so many things go through your mind. Some­times you just don’t feel com­fort­able on cer­tain shots. And un­for­tu­nately he hit a bad shot and an­other bad shot.”

Spi­eth’s worst dam­ag­ing mo­ments came at the par-three 12th where he hit suc­ces­sive shots into the wa­ters of Rae’s Creek in front of the green be­fore find­ing a back bunker with his fifth en-route to a mind­bog­gling seven.

“Right now it’s un­for­tu­nate and I’m sure he’s killing him­self for it,” Day, who clinched his first ma­jor vic­tory at last year’s PGA Cham­pi­onship, said of a player known for his men­tal strength.

“But we all do it to our­selves. Hope­fully he just learns from it and gets bet­ter.

“You go out and lead for seven rounds at Au­gusta, he’s done a fan­tas­tic job,” added Day, re­fer­ring to Spi­eth’s achieve­ment in hold­ing the out­right Masters lead for a record seven con­sec­u­tive rounds un­til his melt­down on Sun­day.

Like Day, Eng­land’s for­mer world No 1 West­wood first be­came aware of Spi­eth’s stun­ning col­lapse while he was play­ing the par-five 15th.

“I saw the leader­board when I chipped in on 15,” said the 42-year-old. “I hadn’t re­ally looked much un­til that stage.

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