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Spieth to draw on Aust Open win in Hawaii

AAP logoAAP 4/01/2017 Evin Priest

It's been six weeks since Jordan Spieth claimed the 2016 Australian Open in a dramatic sudden-death playoff, but the world No.5 is preparing to feed off the confidence boost he grabbed at Royal Sydney.

The American returns to defend his title at the US PGA Tour's Tournament of Champions in Hawaii, 12 months after he gapped the 32-man field with a 30-under-par four-round total for an eight-shot victory at Kapalua's Plantation course.

But the 23-year-old says his other source of inspiration this week is winning his second Australian Open title in a three-man playoff from Australians Cameron Smith and Ashley Hall in November.

"Any time you have a recent win you think about that, even if it's a month and a half, six weeks apart," said Spieth.

"It's still a confidence boost. The way we played that sudden-death hole, I'll take it into this season and try and get in the winner's circle as quickly as possible and feed off that.

"Oz was great to us; it always has been. And this week's been a good week for us, too. The confidence is running high."

The Texan is open to returning to Sydney to defend the Stonehaven Cup again this year, when the national championship returns to The Australian Golf Club - the site of his six-shot victory in 2014.

"Certainly look into it (returning); I don't know what I'm doing past February, honestly," said Spieth.

"I enjoy playing Royal Sydney ... really anywhere down there. I like the courses in Melbourne, too - great golf on the sandbelt.

"We love going to Oz and we normally look at that (trip) more April, May area on those decisions for the end of the year."

Two-time major champion Spieth believes the hilly topography at Kapalua, in Maui, allows him an edge over the field made up of 2016 US PGA Tour winners - including Australia's world No.1 Jason Day plus No.3 Dustin Johnson and No.6 Hideki Matsuyama.

"A lot like Augusta National, with the amount of slope and uneven lies and the amount of imagination you need in approach shots and on and around the greens, it brings out more the feel side of my game.

"I feel like that's an advantage of mine here."

Spieth attributed unrealistic expectations from his historic 2015 season - when he won the Masters, US Open and three other Tour events - for a 2016 that still delivered two US PGA Tour titles but no more majors and a big stumble at the Masters.

"It didn't necessarily help that 2016, my own and anyone else's expectations, given the performance that we had (in 2015). But I also knew that wasn't realistic to continue to do.

"I was happy when the ball touched down and 2017 started. It was still a great year in 2016, but I learned a lot on both end of things, highs and lows."

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