A tale of two nines for Spieth
A poor back nine cost Masters champion Jordan Spieth at the Memorial Tournament on Friday, though he’s not out of it yet.
The 21-year-old finds himself five strokes behind on the leaderboard, though it could have been so much better.
Spieth’s round of two-under par 70 began with a birdie on the first before he went on to make a trio of pars.
All that changed when he sunk a 48-foot putt for eagle on the par-five fifth and followed that up with consecutive birdies on the seventh and eighth.
The back nine was to be a different story, however.
Spieth’s woes began as he missed a 16-foot putt on the par-four 10th to record a double bogey.
His troubles continued on the 12th when he couldn’t convert an eight-foot putt, leading to another bogey, and that was followed by six pars in a row as he failed to make up any lost ground.
Afterwards, he admitted the double bogey on the 12th had gotten him flustered.
“I got mentally off,” he said. “I got very uncomfortable, didn’t put good, solid strokes on it. I was very tentative.
“Just a fluke day, just a fluke hour of golf,” he said. “It normally doesn’t happen like that. It was just weird today.”
‘My best is ahead of me’ – Justin Rose motivated by winning majors, not rankings
Justin Rose concerned about his chances of defending his Olympic title
Rory McIlroy on latest near-miss in Abu Dhabi: ‘I don’t feel like I played great’
McIlroy avoids mentioning final-round blues but admits he needs to get more consistent.
Tyrrell Hatton eyes Ryder Cup spot after winning Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship
Hatton carded a closing 66 to finish 18 under par.
Tyrrell Hatton wins Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship as Rory McIlroy misses out
Rory McIlroy leads the way in Abu Dhabi as he eyes overdue victory
McIlroy will have to keep his Ryder Cup team-mates at bay if he is to claim the trophy.
Tyrrell Hatton dominant as Rory McIlroy falters in Abu Dhabi
Hatton led by five shots at the end of a second weather-affected day.
Phil Mickelson on Tiger’s latest surgery: ‘I feel bad because golf should be a game of a lifetime’
Mickelson admitted he was saddened by the news of Woods’ latest back surgery.
Rory McIlroy makes brilliant start to fog-affected Abu Dhabi Championship
McIlroy has a remarkable record in Abu Dhabi with four second-place finishes.
Rory McIlroy shines in Abu Dhabi to take first-round lead following flawless 64