Jordan Spieth got off to a strong start at the Australian Open, but it still wasn't enough to keep pace with a decorated amateur.
Making his first start since the Ryder Cup, Spieth shot a 3-under 69 in the opening round at the Royal Sydney Golf Club to sit in a tie for eighth as he looks to win this event for the second time in three years. Beginning on the back nine, Spieth carded three birdies in his first 11 holes and did not drop a shot until a bogey on the par-4 eighth hole, his 17th of the day.
"Gave myself a lot of chances today. Putter was a bit cold, which I think just takes a little bit of time to warm up, a couple rounds to get into it," Spieth told reporters. "As the wind picks up and the week goes on, certainly going to need to try to control the ball off the tee and putting may become less of a factor, as long as you're hitting the greens in regulation."
Spieth is staring up at a pair of co-leaders in Lucas Herbert and amateur Curtis Luck. Playing alongside Spieth, Luck made seven birdies against two bogeys in Sydney. He is looking to cap off an impressive year that already includes wins at both the U.S. Amateur and the Asia-Pacific Amateur.
Luck is attempting to become the first amateur to win the Australian Open since 18-year-old Aaron Baddeley pulled off the feat in 1999.