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April 9, 2021

Jordan Spieth

Augusta, Georgia, USA

Quick Quotes

JORDAN SPIETH: I thought today was a really, really solid last six holes. I thought I had pretty good chances for birdie on 3 and 8 with a wedge in my hand from inside of 50 yards, and that's normally routine for me, so I was getting a little frustrated through 12 holes at only being 1-under, and instead of making a mistake, I hit it out of the trees, I hit a really good shot out of the trees on 13 today that set up a birdie, I thought that was kind of a turning point that could have gone the other direction.

I mean, having made a triple and have five over-par holes through two rounds, I feel pretty good about being at 5-under. That's, what, eight birdies and an eagle on a very difficult golf course, and I think I'd probably sign up for a similar score after the next two days.

Q. For years we heard Tiger Woods speaking about trying to peak four times a year and other players have echoed that sentiment. Do you feel like that's what you're doing right now?

JORDAN SPIETH: No, mine feels like steady progress. I wish that it felt like everything led into peaking here, but I'm just trying to honestly have things just move 5 percent closer than they did last week to structurally being where I am in the swing, and I'm putting some very average swings on it, and I'm putting some good ones on it still. There's more good ones than there was a month ago and there were more then than there was a month before that. I'm not in a place where I can say I'm standing up and just striping, but I'm in a place to where I've got it to where I can manage it and I can manage around this golf course.

If it can just get 1 percent better each day here on in, that leaves me with a pretty good opportunity, I think.

Q. Do you look at the scoreboard at all on a Friday?

JORDAN SPIETH: Not much. It doesn't really do much, especially when tomorrow is going to be I think a pretty volatile day. I mean, we've got winds projected to be, what, 10 to 20 miles an hour.

They threw some water on the golf course today, I mean, there was actually some green grass on No. 9 today and there wasn't yesterday. So it was -- with that being said, it's more is Rosey going off or is he holding on, and after seeing his start, I thought, game on, let's stick to the game plan.

Q. You probably saw he wasn't running away with it.

JORDAN SPIETH: Yeah, I didn't mean didn't necessarily look. I don't like to scoreboard watch out here because it doesn't affect the way I play any of the holes, but I think I just kind of found myself gazing at seeing what -- I actually think I needed to see what Collin was at because I wasn't sure if I marked the right score down, and then I saw he had dropped down to 4 or 5 at the time and thought, okay, he had gone backwards to start.

Anyway, I mean, if you'd have asked me what I thought the leading score through two rounds would have been, I would have said somewhere around 7- or 8-under, and I guess it could technically go more than 7, but I've played -- 2014 it was really firm and I remember that Saturday getting on the fourth green and being like, wow, this is dicey, and with forecasted winds, as well, when there's very little friction on the greens, the wind affects the ball more than you think, I mean, more than any of y'all would imagine out here. It just gets very difficult to make a lot of putts. That's why the scores will be, I think, more challenging over the weekend if we don't get any rain.

Q. Speaking of Rosey, he puts that great round together yesterday, and it looked like he was playing a different course than anybody else. What is the psychological dynamic of trying to put two of those kind of rounds together, because it seems like not just here but everywhere it's very hard for you guys to put two super low rounds together?

JORDAN SPIETH: Yeah, typically when you get something going like 9-under through 11 on a windy, firm Augusta, I didn't see any of his round, but you get -- I think I saw one shot he hit into 8, hit on that left hill and funneled all the way over. I've been in that scenario where my first round in 2015 I was under a tree and it one-hopped and hit the pin and goes to there and it saves me a shot or two. You normally are either making a lot of long putts or you get a couple good breaks or a combination of the two, and that part is a little less sustainable to be able to just -- it's not like you can go out and you're still trying to birdie every hole and shoot 7-under every round, but in order for those to come together, you typically have to get kind of those breaks, as well.

Q. Is there a psychological reason, other than your own expectations, like hey, I just did this yesterday so let's get it rolling?

JORDAN SPIETH: I think that's always a little bit of an internal battle, like oh, man, I just striped this one down the fairway, let's picture the same shot. But then like the wind is a little different or feel is just a little different, so I think just trying to look at every day as a new day is probably the easiest way to -- you almost want to throw out the good and the bad rounds, remember how good things feel, but the super good ones you don't want to necessarily try and chase, yeah. It's a good point. It's a challenge.

Q. Do you allow yourself to even say, I can win this thing this year?

JORDAN SPIETH: I came in thinking that. I still -- I'm in position now to think that for sure, but at the halfway point, I would have been pleased with being two back, if that's where I'm at, especially after last week. For me I think less is more and rest is key, but certainly, I mean, in a very -- I'm happy that the golf course has the opportunity to play more and more difficult over the weekend. I think that personally I'm looking forward to that kind of challenge, and I think that could be an advantage to me if I'm in control of the ball.

Q. How would you say you and Michael navigate the course differently today than you did your first Masters?

JORDAN SPIETH: First Masters together? I think I actually play maybe even a little more aggressively now than I did then. But it really just depends on the course. Like 2014 and 2015 my first two Masters played very different from each other, and so the way you attack each hole almost is very -- is a totally different routine. But there's certain pins where we're like, okay, this is where we're trying to be in two. The left pin on 2, I'm not trying to get it on the green because it's a harder two-putt from the back right than it is chipping from 50 yards right of the green. There's just certain pins where we start to make adjustments.

But there's a way to play each hole. If it's firmer you've got to back off a little bit, and when it's softer you can throw it more at pins.

Q. Does the conversation change at all throughout that?

JORDAN SPIETH: Just on -- yeah, just on where -- I mean, going in we talk about where the pins on, on the range, where is -- all right, that's where we're going to miss it and that's where we're trying to hit it in two, that's the best look at birdie, that type of thing.

Q. You had a really big gallery today. Did you feel that energy?

JORDAN SPIETH: Yeah, we had a lot of people last week, and so maybe -- I mean, I didn't feel that it was any more than yesterday until the end of the round yesterday. It was such a slow round that I think people decided not only to have dinner but maybe go to bed by the time we finished. We didn't finish until 7:40 yesterday, and so it kind of dissipated at the end. But today people seemed to be kind of out and overcast day, I don't know, I think it's just the times that we played.

Q. You chucked your ball into Rae's Creek after 12. Describe your relationship with that hole.

JORDAN SPIETH: I made bogey. I hit a really good shot in. It hit in the lip of the bunker about one pace from being a good-looking birdie, went back kind of into a rake print, had to play almost as if it was plugged, hit a bad putt, was upset at the hole. If any body of water is there I'm going to throw it in the body of water and change to a new golf ball. There's no fans there, a kid to throw it to or anything like that. There's no one there. I don't want to look at that golf ball anymore, so it goes into the water and then I go to another ball.

I've birdied that hole a lot of times. I've played it poorly. I hit a good shot today, got a good game plan on it, it's just a matter of which wind you get, if it ends up landing the right distance or not.

Q. Are there still things you're learning about this golf course, and if so, how often do you learn things? Do you learn things every round at this golf course?

JORDAN SPIETH: We don't see it this firm this often, so yes, this year. In November I don't think I learned anything. Even in 2019 I don't think I learned anything new. But you get a different putt that you want to jot down and kind of take a little mental video of that and move on. Out here I think it's more just like -- I might ask Collin on the next hole, what did you play that putt because I'm kind of curious, and then I just have in the memory bank, write it in the book, something like that.

But as far as angles and shots into greens and which putt is faster towards Rae's Creek or whatever, I think pretty much got a lot of that dialed in.

Q. Is there any shot that will go in the memory bank from today?

JORDAN SPIETH: I think putting it from past the green on 15 was a little nicer than that chip yesterday, even though the chip happened to go in. It was a lot less stressful putting it from there down to a foot versus a chip would have gone in the water. My 3-wood out of the trees on 13, I just kind of punch cut a 3-wood that was a really nice shot, set up a really great angle to make birdie, and if it comes out the wrong way I can make 6, so there was a couple shots there. I think that one -- you look for moments that turn momentum, that was a good one for me.

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