Jordan Spieth ‘slump’ says as much about rivals’ strength as his own woes | Ewan Murray

Jordan Spieth’s fall to No5 in the world after an all-conquering 2015 reflects a year of toil but at 23 he has plenty of time to return to the top

Golfers tend to look upon world rankings as a consequence of success rather than a key incentive. Still, some figures leap out; Luke Donald a lowly 77th, Hideki Matsuyama at a career high of No6 and, suddenly, Jordan Spieth shuffled down to No5.

How did this happen to Spieth? Only 12 months ago he had claimed two of the year’s four majors and taken possession of the FedEx Cup. Even Jason Day’s US PGA Championship victory was insufficient to shift Spieth v McIlroy as the rivalry of choice. Perhaps commentators were a little too anxious to create the sense of dual detachment at the top. Maybe they just got the names wrong.

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