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Sepp Straka says he feels free of any 'crazy hype' to defend his John Deere Classic title

Ryder Cup winner Sepp Straka believes he remains free of any "crazy hype", despite defending his John Deere Classic title as the top-ranked player in the field.

Straka claimed his second PGA Tour title at TPC Deere Run last year, the world number 24 carding a closing 62 despite making a double bogey on the 18th when needing a birdie to shoot 59.

A fortnight later Straka finished joint second in the Open at Royal Liverpool, two results which helped earn the Austrian a wild card from captain Luke Donald for Europe‘s Ryder Cup team which regained the trophy in Rome.

"It was an incredible part of the year," Straka recalled during his pre-tournament press conference.

"I was playing some pretty good golf but wasn't getting much out of it, wasn't putting very well, and that all flipped here.

"Went to the Open, had another really great week, my best finish in a major and things went from there.

"Ended up making it to Atlanta (for the Tour Championship). Playing on the Ryder Cup was definitely the highlight of the year, but that probably wouldn't have been possible if I didn't get hot here at the John Deere."

Asked if his expectations had changed from 12 months ago, Straka added: "Not really. My expectations don't really change. Pretty much have the same expectations this year as I did last year.

"It's not like there is crazy hype this year either for me I don't think. I'm doing all this (media) with having won last year, but I don't feel like I ever really hype myself up too much.

"Just try to prepare for the tournament and then try to give it my all when Thursday comes around.

"I played the back nine yesterday so I was reliving some of the shots, some of the memories from last year.

"I had a lot of opportunities, gave myself a lot of the looks coming down the stretch for 59 then hit in the water on 18.

"That's not one I love to remember, but ended up being part of a win."

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