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The Masters: Jordan Spieth laments poor start as Justin Thomas vents his frustration

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Jordan Spieth felt a bad start had cost him any chance of victory in the final round at Augusta National; Justin Thomas frustrated by Saturday delay but insists he can “do something fun and historic” in The Masters

Jordan Spieth tees off on the third hole during the final round of the Masters

Jordan Spieth tees off on the third hole during the final round of the Masters

Jordan Spieth felt a slow start had cost him any chance of victory in the final round of The Masters, although he was content with his week’s work at Augusta National.

The 27-year-old American started the day six behind Hideki Matsuyama but dropped shots at the first, fifth and sixth – either side of a birdie at the second – to leave himself with too much ground to make up despite playing the back nine in three-under 33.

He eventually finished joint-third with Xander Schauffele on seven under after a two-under 70, three behind Matsuyama.

    Hideki Matsuyama hangs on to winFinal round as it happened

Spieth said: “I just needed a really good start to have a chance today. I just didn’t have a great start. Then it was just kind of the story of the week.

“I hit some good putts, burned a lot of lips, certainly struck the ball well enough to win the golf tournament, and they just didn’t go in.

“I’m tired. I felt some mental fatigue for sure and made a couple of bonehead mistakes over the weekend, just from, I think, maybe the long stretch. But all in all, certainly another good finish here.”

Spieth was bidding to add a second Masters title to his name after winning in 2015 Spieth was bidding to add a second Masters title to his name after winning in 2015

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Spieth has returned to form in recent months, culminating in last week’s Texas Open win – his first since The Open in 2017 – but insists there is still plenty of room for further improvement.

He added: “I wish that I had the control of my swing that I hope is coming or I think is coming soon because it would have made things a little easier this week, and I did strike the ball really well.

“I hit a lot of fairways. I put myself in position to hit a lot of greens, and distance control is a strength of mine with iron play, and I did a good job of that.

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“So all in all, I’ve made a lot of good progress, but I feel like that road ahead is still significant for me. So I’ve got at least a couple weeks off right now where I’ll rest for a while and then regroup – off weeks are where you can make maybe five per cent differences. Tournament to tournament, it’s hard to go more than a couple per cent and trust what you’re doing.

“I’ll have a good stretch coming up here in May and June, and I’m excited for what’s to come.”

Thomas: Delay ruined my momentum

World No 2 Justin Thomas had hoped to shoot a 61 or 62 in the final round to launch a late charge from one under, but he never really got going with a round of 73 leaving him tied for 21st on level par.

Thomas, who mixed five birdies with six bogeys on Sunday, blamed Saturday’s rain delay for upsetting his rhythm with a triple-bogey eight at the 13th after the restart derailing his challenge, although he believes he is fully capable of winning a Green Jacket one day.

Justin Thomas won The Players Championship last month but was unable to follow up at Augusta National Justin Thomas won The Players Championship last month but was unable to follow up at Augusta National

“I didn’t putt well the last two days. I really didn’t play very well through the four days,” he said after completing his final round.

“That delay yesterday really got me. It just completely ruined my whole momentum. I was in a great place and really just played some bad golf from there on in.

“No, just played poorly. It sucks because this place is really good for me. I feel like if I play this place well, like really well like I have in some other tournaments in the past, I can really do something fun and historic here, but I have yet to do it, so clearly I have to figure something out.”

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