Tuesday 22 October 2019

'I may have looked like the bad guy' - Jordan Spieth criticised for calling out his caddie at US Open

Caddie Michael Greller talks to Jordan Spieth
Caddie Michael Greller talks to Jordan Spieth

Jason Ford

Jordan Spieth has been criticised after TV cameras picked up an exchange between the American and his caddie following two misjudged shots in Pebble Beach.

Spieth put his tee shot on the eight into the hazard and then his approach shot through the green and into the rough before he unleashed his frustration on caddie Michael Greller.

"Two perfect shots, Michael," Spieth was heard saying. "You got me in the water on one and over the green on the other."

Spieth saved a bogey and went on to sign for a one-over-par 71 and revealed afterwards that it was just frustration that got the better of him.

"When you hit a couple of shots exactly where you want and one's in the water and the next one's dead over the green, I'm going to be frustrated that as a team we didn't figure out how to make sure that didn't happen," Spieth said. "I may have looked like the bad guy, but my intentions were that we should be in play if the ball is hit solidly. and I was out of play on both shots.

"We were talking about potentially one less [club on the second shot], and I said, 'But isn't it playing about 60 [yards] with a fade?' And then he said yes.

"So we both agreed on that. It was clearly a 4-iron off the tee. At the same time, when you hit a couple of shots exactly where you want to, and the first one is in the water and the next one is dead over the green, I'm going to be frustrated that as a team we didn't figure out how to make sure that didn't happen."

 

Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell off to strong start at US Open - but a tough day for Shane Lowry at Pebble Beach

Rory McIlroy is firmly in contention after his opening round at the US Open, carding a three-under-par 68 at Pebble Beach.

McIlroy ends day one just two strokes behind current clubhouse leaders Rickie Fowler, Louis Oosthuizen and Xander Schauffele, who all finished with on -5.

The Northern Irishman, who is looking for a first Major win since 2014, began his round at the 10th hole with a bogey. However, he bounced back shortly afterwards with a birdie at the 13th and another at the 17th before the turn.

McIlroy then picked up shots with back-to-back birdies at the second and third in a blemish-free second nine, although he did miss some further opportunities to better his score.

2010 US Open champion Graeme McDowell also made a strong start in his attempt to win another Major at Pebble Beach with a two-under-par round of 69. McDowell made 16 pars and two birdies, at the fourth and sixth holes, to keep himself in contention on a tough opening day.

Shane Lowry didn't fare as well as McDowell and McIlroy, and is now in a struggle to make the cut after finishing on +4.

Lowry made two birdies on the front nine at four and seven but was inconsistent in his play, also bogeying the second and making double bogey at six and nine. His play was more solid on the back nine, but he carded one more bogey at 11 to finish with a round of 75.

US Open day two tee times (Irish time)

Rory McIlroy 21.36

Shane Lowry 21.58

Graeme McDowell 21.58

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