With the Tiger Woods reign slowly coming to a demise, the future of American golf could lie in the hands of this weeks Valspar Championship winner Jordan Speith. The young American star managed to fend off Patrick Reed and Sean O’Hair in a three-way play-off to secure just his second ever PGA Tour win.
Since bursting onto the scene in 2013, Speith’s career has progressed dramatically, from getting his first career win on the Tour and reaching the top ten in the world rankings. He is a favourite among many but is always seen as an outsider when it comes to Major competitions. Could this win change that?
Ryan Moore led at the start of the day and never really looked like continuing his fine form even after he holed out from 170 yards for eagle at the sixth. Moore dropped a shot at the tenth with a poor putt from six feet but soon extended his lead to three with two birdies at the next two holes. Speith soon followed his playing partner with back to back birdies to take him tied for the lead on 10-under-par.
Fellow American Patrick Reed celebrated in some style on the 18th as he saw his putt from the edge of the green go in to take him to 10 under-par and the clubhouse leader.
With the target set, there were only three players left on the course that could change the lead. But neither could take the outright lead, with Speith and O’Hair making par saves at the last to take it into a three-way play-off. The rest of the field looked on as Moore needed to make a birdie up the last to make it a four-way tie, but failed to do so as he saw his second shot fall short of the green and a bogey was the best he could make.
Both Speith and O’Hair had great chances for birdie and the win on the opening two play- off holes with Reed staying in the competition with two top quality up and downs. The play- off continued down the 17th with Reed and O’Hair making comfortable pars to help continue their fight for the Valspar title. But neither golfer could do much to prevent Speith rolling in a monster putt from the left-hand side of green to secure a win for the 21-year- old.
The win could mean an array of things with the Masters just around the corner. His recent form could mean he is red-hot favourite going into the first major of the year or it could mean he has peaked to early and the only way for Speith is down. The latter however is never the case for Speith. His consistent swing and naive mind means he only has one thing on his mind and that is to win.