‘It’s fun in some ways’ – Covid rules mean no Open house-share for Jordan Spieth
Former champion Jordan Spieth has had to break with his traditional pre-tournament house-share, which he says has given him an old-school feel to Open week.
Since 2016 Spieth and his good friends Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson, Jimmy Walker and Jason Dufner have all usually stayed in the same property with their wives, partners and a personal chef.
Together they have created an American college ‘frat’ house vibe with backyard baseball games, football, movie nights and eating food from home, and it has certainly been good for Spieth, who won the Claret Jug at Royal Birkdale just a year after their first started rooming together.
Coronavirus protocols – stricter than those of United States-based tournaments – this week mean players are now restricted to a four-person bubble which can only be selected from a caddie, coach, manager, medical support, translator or a single family member.
While it has broken up the usual happy house prior to the only major outside of America, Spieth is trying to not let that affect his preparation.
“We normally have five or six of us in a house but obviously we can’t do that this year so everyone is with their own teams,” he told the PA news agency at Royal St George’s.
“It’s almost like the good old days. The first few Open championships we’d stay with just our team, play cards and have food delivered – it’s fun in some ways.
“This is the way it is this week, similar to the way to we did it the first few years.”
It does have other drawbacks, however, although none that cannot be overcome by a player whose estimated career winnings stand at more than GBP 33million – not including endorsements and sponsorship deals.
“Financially it is nice when you are sharing with five or six guys in a big house and you have one chef for everyone,” he added.
“It makes it a really easy week. In that sense it is a little bit different.”
Since winning the Claret Jug four years ago, Spieth has managed ninth and 20th-place finishes.
After just one top-10 finish (third at the 2019 US PGA) in eight majors, he rediscovered some form to post third place at the Masters in April.
He could not maintain that form into the next two majors, finishing 30th and 19th at the US PGA and US Open respectively, but his performances outside golf’s premier events have suggested he is on the cusp of a return.
Since February he has registered one victory and six top 10s in 10 regular tour events and is feeling more confident as he returns to links golf.
“I love coming over here,” he said. “Even in the years I haven’t been in form, I seem to play well at Opens.
“I feel like I am coming in in better form than I have in previous years, coming in off a few weeks off, so hopefully there is very little to no rust.
“But I think the biggest thing coming over here is getting used to the speed of the greens; it’s slower – you have to make the adjustment and we have done a pretty good job over the years so we’ll get to work over the next day and a half.”
WATCH: Golf course maintenance crew lose control of cart and drive it off bridge
Out of control maintenance men can be a curse.
PING refresh PLD Milled putters – and the standards are as high as ever
There is nothing about the 2024 PING PLD Milled putters that is really surprising but the range lives up to the name.
Tiger Woods makes rare wood change in adjusted 2024 bag
Tiger Woods makes a big change.
11 of Texas’ best exclusive golf courses that you’ll probably never play
Texas has a fine selection of private golf courses worth adding to your bucket list.
WATCH: Wife makes no attempt to hide laugher watching husband mishit golf shot
If you can’t laugh at yourself on the golf course bring your wife along.
WATCH: Golfer struggles to get down the green in treacherous wind and rain
What does it take to get you off the golf course?
The 7 best balls for low swing speed golfers to get more distance
Get more distance with these balls.
WATCH: Amateur golfer suffers pain of double-hit attempting chip for bogey
Double-hits are no longer punished the same way as before.
Why Bandon Dunes is a must visit golfing mecca in Oregon
Bandon Dunes is a special golf resort.
WATCH: Paige Spiranac takes on Country Club Adjacent’s Back Off Challenge
Country Club Adjacent finally lined up Paige Spiranac for a backoff challenge.