February 7, 2019 / 4:34 AM / 11 days ago

Golf: Career will not be defined by a few bad years, says Spieth

(Reuters) - Jordan Spieth has not lifted a trophy since the 2017 British Open and has drifted to 21st in the world rankings but the Texan says he would have had a good career even if he never wins again and that he will not go chasing results.

Jan 25, 2019; San Diego, CA, USA; Jordan Spieth plays his second shot on the fourth hole during the second round of the Farmers Insurance Open golf tournament at Torrey Pines Municipal Golf Course - South Course. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The former world number one triumphed 11 times on the PGA Tour before turning 24 but is coming off the first disappointing year of his career.

He has seemed out of sorts since a poor final round at last year’s British Open at Carnoustie, where he shared the lead starting on Sunday before fading to a tie for ninth.

Spieth returns this week to Pebble Beach, where he won two years ago, for the PGA Tour’s Pebble Beach Pro-Am that is played on three courses on the Monterey Peninsula in northern California.

“Your career is not defined by a couple of bad years and I could have really poor years the rest of my career and still have a pretty fantastic career,” Spieth told reporters on Wednesday.

“If I think about it that way it it certainly makes me happier, frees me up a bit. I’m in a good place now.”

Pebble Beach will also host the U.S. Open in June when the course is likely to be much drier than the damp, lush conditions that will greet players this week after recent heavy rains.

Spieth is part of a field that also includes world number three Dustin Johnson, who won the European Tour’s Saudi International on Sunday.

Whether or not this is the week Spieth finds the missing ingredient, he thinks his game is moving in the right direction.

“Sometimes that means results are coming soon, sometimes they’re coming later, but they’re coming,” he added.

“I’m not going to chase them as hard as last year because you can get hurt doing that, you can get into some bad patterns.”

Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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