Spieth impressively assured as he prepares for history bid

Wed Jul 15, 2015 1:21pm EDT
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By Tony Jimenez

ST ANDREWS, Scotland (Reuters) - Pressure? What pressure? That seemed to be the message Jordan Spieth wanted to send out as he prepared for his attempt to become the first player since 1953 to win the year's first three majors.

Calm? Modest? Self-effacing? Witty? Grandfatherly, even? The 21-year-old American wonderkid was all of those as he gave an assured performance at a packed news conference on the eve of the 144th British Open at St Andrews.

Spieth is the new kid on the block, the name on everyone's lips at the Home of Golf, but he played down the significance of the expectation that might bear down on him following his victories at the U.S. Masters and the U.S. Open.

"If I get into a position where guys are trying to get their first major, that pressure is different after you've already been there," the world number two said on Wednesday.

"It's certainly still there...but I think I can certainly draw on the first two majors," added Spieth who is bidding to match the 1953 feat achieved by fellow countryman Ben Hogan.

"I don't think of those other two majors as being in a row this year, I just think of them as tournaments I've won that are of the same calibre. Whether they were a year or three years ago, it doesn't cross my mind when I draw on those feelings.

"When I step on the tee on Thursday I don't look at this as trying to win three in a row, I look at this as trying to win The Open Championship at a very special place."

When Spieth uses the words "very special" it is a term that could easily describe his impressive countenance.   Continued...

Jul 15, 2015; St. Andrews, Fife, GBR; Jordan Spieth plays from the 2nd fairway during his final practice round for the 144th Open Championship at The Old Course at the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews. Mandatory Credit: Ian Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports