ADAM Scott admitted he was gunning for the magical mark of 59 at Royal Sydney this morning after smashing the course record in a dominant start at the Australian Open.
Scott shot a spectacular 10-under par 62 in the morning groups to move straight into the lead and begin his campaign for the triple crown in imperious fashion.
In front of huge galleries, Scott took three strokes off the course record of 65, which was held by five Australian players.
Follow all the action from Royal Sydney in our blog below.
The world No.2 started on fire with six straight birdies in the opening six holes, and looked on track to post the rarest of rare rounds – less than 60 strokes – but a mid-round malaise stalled Scott’s progress.
A late flurry of four birdies in the last four holes ensured he still finished with a spectacular round but the 33-year-old admitted later the prospect of hitting a 59 had entered his mind after his blitzkrieg start.
“I wasn’t thinking about it hard but I knew it was a possibility,” Scott said.
“Having birdied the six holes I’d birdied, I felt like all the opportunities were still to come. So if I kept it going and had a good running around the turn, I thought it was on for sure.
“It could have been on but, like I said, I struggled for a few holes and I wasn’t giving myself any chances.
“But amazingly I holed so many four and five-foot putts today, which is what you have to do to have a good score. It’s nice to see the practice I have been doing with the putting paying off.”
Such was his crisp ball striking into the greens, Scott barely needed his flat stick. In his opening run of six birdies the longest putt he stood over was two metres.
Event Date: 28/11/2013 – 01/12/2013
Course Name: Royal Sydney Golf Club
Course Length: 6344m
Par Score: 72
|T7||Brady Watt (a)||(AUS)||F||-4||68||68|
Some unusually wayward hitting jn the middle third of his round saw Scott scrambling with good putting saves, however, before the Aussie star stiffed a ball to a metre on the par three sixth (his 15th hole) and reignited his round. Four birdies followed.
“It was a beautiful morning, that’s for sure, for golf,” Scott said.
“The front nine was ideal conditions – which for us was obviously the back nine – I came out hitting great shots and didn’t have much work to do to clean them up the first five holes. I made a nice putt on the sixth and I was really rolling at that point.
“But its interesting, because I have gone through a roller coaster of emotion out there today. From cruising after six holes to having to work pretty hard for the next six or seven holes just to make some pars, and nothing much going my way, missing a green at the fourth hole, feeling like my swing was leaving me again. But then to hit one good shot on the par three fifth, and knock it in, and then finish really strong.
“It’s amazing that in 18 holes you can do 360 degrees of emotion and mood swings and everything.
“It was a great start and a very nice little course record to have here at Royal Sydney.
“I felt like there has been a good round in me for four weeks and I threw it out there today.”
Canadian Ryan Yip also managed to equal the old course record in an impressive round of seven-under 65, settling into second place behind Scott.
David McKenzie was one shot further back, with Jason Norris, Aaron Baddeley and Jason Scrivener all back at five-under.