Date: November 24, 2015
Author: Martin Blake

Spieth still shooting for the stars

World No. 1 Jordan Spieth has reset his goals after his astonishing 2015 season, but has not lost any hunger. In the words of his Australian coach, Cameron McCormick: "He aims for the stars and challenges himself to get there.''

Spieth told a media conference at The Australian today that he is hellbent on winning the Emirates Australian Open again as well as Tiger Woods' tournament in America next week, just as he did in consecutive weeks in 2014.

"I believe my best is forward,'' he said. "I believe that my prime is ahead of me. I have to believe that, but I do. Sure, if last year happens to be the best I ever have in my career, I hope that I had a few that approached it at least.''

He won $US 22 million in the 2015 season including two majors, but he takes little notice of all the trophies sitting around his Dallas home. The Stonehaven Cup for winning this country's national championship has been there all year, too, in its same little spot, but it is about the trophies he has not won yet.

"I've got Stonehaven in one room, I've got the (green Augusta National) jacket in the closet, the US Open (trophy) in another room. The Stonehaven's been in the same place since I moved into the house I'm in, the US Open's moved around, I've had to take the jacket places with me.

"As far as enjoying it, we play to have those trophies in our possession. But it's funny, once I have them in my possession, I feel a sense of accomplishment, but no need to flaunt them because the only thing better than one is two, the only thing better than two is three. There's the next one to get, or the same one to get again.''

The 2014 Australian Open triumph, clinched with an amazing final round of 63, set him up for all of this, and he still acknowledges that Sunday at The Australian as "one of the best rounds I've ever played in my life''. Specifically, he says it is the day he re-learned to close tournaments again.

"It's the mental edge come the weekend that I really could close the deal. I've had it kind of my whole life, then I lost it a bit on tour. So it was a bit of a learning curve. I was certainly working on it, trying to find something. You just need to be in position enough to have enough tries and find a solution, and I finally did.''

The world No. 1 said it was "a no-brainer'' to come back to Sydney and defend his title, since Australia is his favorite place to travel and play golf. He thinks Adam Scott is "the guy to beat this week'' on a course that he has come to love. "It's such a pure, firm course.''

The 22-year-old Texan tees off at 7.05 am on Thursday from the 10th tee, alongside former winners Lee Westwood of England and Geoff Ogilvy of Australia.