Adam Scott’s on-again, off-again love affair with the flatstick that made him forever famous as Australia’s first Masters champion is on the verge of being rekindled at this week’s Australian PGA Championship at RACV Royal Pines Resort.
Scott played an abbreviated practice round with rising star Curtis Luck on a gorgeous Gold Coast Monday afternoon where he putted exclusively with the long putter that was not in the bag at last month’s WGC-HSBC Champions tournament or the Presidents Cup.
Although he declined a request to speak to New Zealand Golf Digest about his potential switch back, Scott did insist there was every chance the short putter could retain its spot in his 14-club rotation when the PGA tees off on Thursday.
Currently ranked No.31 in the world, Scott begins his quest to win a second Joe Kirkwood Cup without a top-10 finish since the FedEx St Jude Classic in June. His best finishes in 2017 are T-9 at the Masters and T-6 at The Players Championship.
With a swing that has been the envy of many since he turned professional in 2000, the majority of Scott’s time on Monday was spent on the greens, reacquainting himself with the long putter by stroking two or three balls to a number of different hole locations.
A look at Scott’s putting stats from the 2017 US PGA Tour season highlights why he is considering an old friend. He ranked 172nd on tour in putts from four feet and 145th from five feet – the length of putt he has historically enjoyed greater success with the long putter.
The ban on anchoring long putters that came into effect on January 1, 2016 forced Scott to investigate a return to the shorter flagstick. But given Bernhard Langer’s continued dominance on the Champions Tour, it looks as though Scott is entertaining the idea of going back to the long putter with a non-anchored putting stroke.