Jordan Spieth claimed he would relish the opportunity to duke it out with the greatest golfer of all time on Sunday at a major championship. That time came last Sunday during the 2018 British Open, but when Spieth saw Tiger Woods’ name atop the leaderboard, he wasn’t thrilled.
Spieth entered last Sunday’s final round at Carnoustie Golf Links tied for the lead at 9-under-par, but in blustery conditions, he quickly fell back to the pack. He began the day four shots clear of Woods, but after a bogey on the fifth and a double-bogey on hole No. 6, Spieth had given the lead away and saw Woods atop the leaderboard.
He turned to his caddie Michael Greller and was in disbelief that he had surrendered the lead to the 42-year-old.
“Dammit. … Dude,” Spieth said, via ESPN’s Ian O’Connor.
Greller tried to get Spieth’s head back in the game by reminding him that Woods no longer is familiar with holding the lead on Sunday at a major.
“He hasn’t been in this position in 10 years, and you’ve been here how many times in the last three years?” Greller said.
Spieth didn’t have it, though, as he fired a 5-over-par-76, finishing at 4-under-par for the championship. Woods’ name wouldn’t remain atop the leaderboard either, as the 42-year-old double-bogeyed on hole No. 11 and finished three strokes back of eventual champion Francesco Molinari.
It still was a memorable day for Woods, who embraced his kids after the round and was thankful to be in the thick of things at a major for the first time since 2011.
With the way Woods has been playing since his comeback began in January, we are certain to see more Sunday duels between him and Spieth, who is a fixture on major championship leaderboards.
Thumbnail photo via Ian Rutherford/USA TODAY Sports Images