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Jordan Spieth has opened up on how his mindset changes being in the lead of a major championship with just 18 holes remaining.
In his young career, Spieth has led the way after 14 of his 69 major rounds – double that of Tiger Woods at the start of his career – and does again tonight after a bogey-free five-under-par 65 took him three clear of Ryder Cup teammate Matt Kuchar and six of the chasing pack.
But Spieth says he could be in for a sleepless as he wrestles with the prospect of completing the third leg of the career grand slam tomorrow.
“It’s a different feeling and one that’s harder to sleep with than the other way around because you feel like you’ve almost got to change the way you do things,” he explained.
“You almost kind of see the finish line. You control your own destiny, and sometimes that can be the big thing on your mind versus, I need help help and I’ll just go out there and try to play well.”
The American, however, says he would rather be at the summit of the leaderboard than in among the chasing pack.
“I wouldn’t rather be in any other position,” he continued. “We have an opportunity to have a really special day on the golf course tomorrow and I’m excited about that.”
With six shots separating Spieth from Brooks Koepka and Austin Connelly in a tie for third place, the main challenge is likely to come from Kuchar, who has been in Spieth’s ‘pod’ for the last few Ryder Cups.
Despite his experience, this will be Kuchar’s first taste of being in a final group on Sunday and attempted to sum up what it was like to be in that situation for the third round.
“It was awfully exciting,” he said. “Being in the last group of a major championship is an exciting place to be and is a totally different animal from an early tee time.
“The plan for tomorrow is to continue with good golf. I’ll be playing with Jordan but not focused on him. My goal is to go out and play Royal Birkdale and you just have to play the best shot for whatever situation you’re in. I’ve been in some good form and I hope it continues tomorrow.”
Meanwhile, Richie Ramsay barely featured on the television coverage all day but finished with back-to-back birdies to finish the day where he started on two-under-par.
Ramsay has booked himself a tee time with Ian Poulter tomorrow at 1.30pm, while Spieth and Kuchar are out at 2.30pm.
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