Australian Adam Scott made a run this weekend at Aronimink Golf Club, just outside of Philadelphia, but came up short to Nick Watney. The fact that Scott was in the hunt after dumping his caddie a month ago and transitioning to a belly putter over the last six months is a testament to Scott’s perseverance.
When Scott, a 26 year-old lad from Adelaide, won the prestigious Players Championship it seemed the golf world had another player from down-under to root for. But since that victory, Scott has won only four times in the U.S., skipping victories in 2009 and this year.
The problem in a nutshell for Scott had been the flat stick and in taking the unusual method of going from conventional to a belly putter, Scott seemed to be signaling his career was teetering on one club in his bag.
Judging from the results this week, it seems to have been a wise move by Scott. In every important statistical putting category the Australian was in the top 10, including 3rd in Strokes Gained and 4th in One-Putt percentage.
Scott was also 45 for 45 within four feet and 61 for 66 inside 10 feet.
“If you hit good putts, they’re going in,’ Scott said after his 3rd place finish at the AT&T National. “I feel like I hit a lot of good putts with that long putter. You know, I’m really happy with where things are at. The purpose of coming here was to get a result before the Open and build up a bit of confidence, and I think I’ve done that.”
Scott has come close at the 2006 PGA Championship finishing 3rd and the 2006 British Open finishing 8th, but for all that he has achieved, 18 worldwide victories, he has never held a major championship.
Turning 31 on the 16th of July, the same day as the 3rd round of the Open Championship, Scott has a chance to give himself a birthday present he will not soon forget.
“Some weeks you just can’t get a result,” Scott said about his poor play at the U.S. Open. ”And it’s important to have a good run before the Open and get a good indication of where everything is at so I can prepare nicely next week.”
Stuart Hall is editor of the Golf Press Association.