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Winning The Open and taking Rory McIlroy's crown? That sounds good to Jordan Spieth

By Kevin Garside

Grand Slam-chasing Jordan Spieth is embracing the challenge of creating history at the Open and knocking Rory McIlroy off his perch.

Holywood superstar McIlroy is unable to defend his Open title this week due to injury, leaving 21-year-old Spieth as the main attraction at St Andrews, where the tournament began this morning.

Speith, from Texas, has already won the Masters and US Open in 2015 and is aiming to become the first player since Ben Hogan in 1953 to win the first three majors of the year, knowing that victory would see him leap above McIlroy to number one in the world rankings.

"I don't feel intimidated by anybody, and I feel like if the name of Rory McIlroy, or whoever it is at the top, I would embrace that challenge to knock them off," said Spieth.

On making it three majors in a row, the confident and calm young American said: "I like to study the history of golf, and I think it's extremely special what this year has brought to our team.

"To have a chance to do what only one other person in the history of golf has done doesn't come around very often.

"I'm sure embracing that opportunity," added Spieth, who is favourite to triumph at St Andrews.

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