Sep 18th, 2017
Spieth Happy to Finish Runner Up
Amid Pressure from Fellow Americans
Words we never thought we would here from such a staunch competitor but Jordan Spieth has told reporters that second place in the final two events is okay for the three-time major champion as that will mean he will finish as the PGA Tours FedEx cup champion and pocket the cool $10 million bonus fund awarded for topping the points standings.
The American has only won the FedEx Cup once before in 2015 and after having claimed this year’s Open Championship, winning the PGA’s signature season race will mark arguably the best return from the youngster during his short career to date.
American talent is filling the PGA ranks at the moment and Jordan Spieth’s hold on the 2017 season has been one filled with momentous occasions but he is well aware that there is plenty of work still to do and following back to back runner up spots at the Northern Trust Open and Dell Technologies Championship, Spieth would happily see that situation occur at the BMW Championship and season ending Tour Championship.
He said in an interview that “If I finish runner up this week (BMW Championship) I will accomplish the goal of being number one going into East Lake (Tour Championship)”.
The field gets culled to only 30 for the finale but Spieth is assured his place and went on to say: “If I have the year I have this year for the next fifteen years, I’ll be the greatest player to ever play the game, if you judge it by major championships”.
Bold words indeed, however, he has some stiff competition with ‘best buddy’ and PGA Champion Justin Thomas breathing down his neck with world number one Dustin Johnson also within touching distance of Spieth who sits at the top of the rankings.
America to the fore
This plethora of American talent, makes it wise to back the USA to win the upcoming Presidents Cup with betting site Betway at 1/3 as off the 14th September but it is Justin Thomas’s form that may prevent Spieth from dominating the game for years to come.
Thomas may not have hit the ground running quite as fast as Spieth in his early career but he has now come into his own and claimed his first major title at this year’s PGA Championship.
A remarkable four tour wins in 2017 has set the 24-year-old up as a leading young talent set to light the game up for years and joins Spieth and Fowler as the long-term future of the game.
The trio are also very good mates and often house share when on tour, in fact the three are so close, that when Thomas had to evacuate his Florida home recently due to Hurricane Irma, it was in Ricki Fowlers house that he stored certain valuables including the PGA Championship Wanamaker Trophy.
Europe hitting back
Although the PGA rankings show three Americans at the top, there is a certain European making waves Stateside.
Big hitting Spaniard Jon Rahm currently occupies fifth place on the FedEx Cup rankings after securing an impressive nine top tens on the PGA Tour this season.
The 22-year-old got his year off to a flyer by winning the Farmers Insurance Open to claim his first professional win and then backed it up by dominating the field at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, an event he won by a comfortable 6 shots.
Long drives off the tee have become Rahm’s signature move but his major record is one that is in need of improving if he is to go from great tour player to serious world number one contender.
A tied 23rd at the US Open in 2016 remains his best overall major finish to date but he has proven he has the stomach for the big occasion.
A tied third at the Mexico Championship (the first WGC event of the year) was followed up by finishing runner-up to world number one Dustin Johnson in the Dell Technologies Match Play.
The Future's Bright
Many people were asking the question how golf would cope without Tiger Woods but the answer was that it was always going to be absolutely fine.
Spieth, Thomas, Rahm, Fowler, the game has enough characters and appeal to keep it as popular as ever for many years to come.
However, in the here and now, there is the small matter of the Tour Championship still to be decided and you can bet your bottom dollar that the four names mentioned above will all be contesting the season finale for many years to come.