Jordan Spieth will command the spotlight at the US PGA Championship in a rare bid for a third major title in 2015. However, before that can happen, he must make the cut at the tournament for the first time. Spieth, who turned 22 in July, failed to qualify for the final two rounds of the championship in 2013 and 2014.
Partly because of that, Spieth included making the cut at all four majors in 2015 as one of the prime targets for his campaign this year. The winner of the Masters in April and the US Open in June, will be seeking to join Ben Hogan and Tiger Woods as the only players in the modern era to have won three majors in a single year. Hogan was the first to complete the hat-trick in 1953 and Woods followed suit in 2000.
At a news conference on 12 August, Spieth was asked about playing with world number one Rory Mcllroy in the opening round on 13 August. The Northern Irishman will start in the same group as Spieth and Zach Johnson, the Open Championship winner.
"I think that's just what you guys want to see. I think he and I just want to go out there and try and win the tournament. If we have to – I mean we have to beat each other in order to do that, along with 100 and how many people are in the event? 156.155 other guys. It's great," Spieth said.
"We're all very happy to see him back. I was excited and what an incredible rehab that was to get back so soon and to get to 100%. Because I know he wouldn't play unless he was, especially on this golf course. It's a tough course to walk.
"So, I'm excited. I'm excited to just share a couple days with Rory and Zach as well. I played with Zach last week, he's a good friend of mine. We're going to have a good time, us three, and hopefully we can all feed off each other these two days. Hopefully we can all get into contention and it will certainly be exciting."
Forty days after suffering an ankle injury, McIlroy will launch his title defence at Whistling Straits fully expecting to play well. Though the Northern Irish world number one has not competed since he tied for ninth in the US Open at Chambers Bay in June, he pronounced himself ready after giving himself a fitness test over four days in Portugal earlier in August. Mcllroy was asked for his thoughts about Spieth's season and the fact that he has become the darling of the golfing world.
He said: "I mean I'm not surprised at all that the narrative has went from me to Jordan and to both of us being here. Jordan has played phenomenal golf for the last 12 months. And even to win the first two majors of the year, have a great chance at St Andrews, he's taking up a lot of the limelight this year, which is deservedly so. I mean it's one of the best years of golf that we have seen in a long, long time.
"I guess as well, it's such, we live in such a world that everything's so reactionary and everything happens so quickly that a year ago after I won this tournament it was the Rory era and then Jordan wins the Masters and it's the Jordan era. And eras last about six months these days instead of 20 years. But it's just the way the world is. With social media and everything having to be instant, it's the world that we live in."