Jordan Spieth has won his fourth event of the season, one week before The Open Championship, after beating Tom Gillis in a playoff.
It proves as the perfect preparation for the third major of the year and has silenced his critics at the same time.
The American was questioned as to why he elected to play the John Deere Classic, over the Scottish Open. Most would say the Scottish Open would be a similar test to the Open, as far as weather conditions and course style is concerned, as well as getting over jet lag a week prior to the major championship.
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Spieth admitted he was rusty, having taken a few weeks off. After round one, he had posted a level par 72, tying for 104th place in the field and was trying to shake out the cobwebs which he did successfully. Rounds of 64 and a career best 61 was capped off with a three under par 68 to force a play off with fellow American, Gillis.
Hunting Down McIlroy
Earlier last week, I was reporting on how Jordan Spieth could catch Rory McIlroy in the Official World Golf Rankings and stake his claim at the top of the pile. It required a top seven finish at the John Deere Championship plus a win at this weeks Open Championship.
The first round had shown that it didn't look likely, but I forgot just how good the Texan really is. So not only has he got a chance of being crowned the number one player in the world, he may not even have to win.
However I’m sure that being the first player to win a grand slam in the same calendar year will be more important to him than being crowned ‘World’s Best’.
Not all bad for Gillis
Most will feel that Gillis has been hard done by, having been beaten by the World’s number two in a less than star studded field. Most of the World’s elite are in Scotland, either playing at Gullane in Scotland, or preparing at St Andrews.
However thanks to The Open Championship’s qualifying policy, the runner up as secured his place at St Andrews. The R&A grant one place at the open for the highest positioned player at the John Deere, who is not already eligible to play.
PGA Tour reports that Gillis feels he still has a chance of winning his first tour event, despite being 46 years old.
"What I saw (Sunday) and the last three days, I'd have to say makes me think I've still got some tread on the tyres left," Gills said.
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