Masters dream more than alive for Scott

Adam Scott may not have won the Northern Trust Open at L.A.’s Riviera Country Club on Sunday but his 14-under par total on disarmingly quick, undulating greens gave further credence to the notion that adding to his tally of major championships is not beyond him this year.

Scott completed his four-under round of 67 with a chip-in birdie on the 18th hole, having cleaned up a spectator to the left of the fairway off the tee and striping a 4-iron just through the green.

Adam Scott Adam Scott celebrates his 2013 US Masters win (Credit: Matthew Harris)

Earlier, Scott was remarkable on the greens, eagling the first and holing a series of lengthy putts to hit the lead before the turn.

A trip to the barranca to the left of the 8th saw him rack up a double bogey and two short missed putts in the middle of the back nine deflated his momentum, but birdies at the final two holes had him heading east towards the Florida swing with a spring in his step.

“I putted pretty good this week, and unbelievable starting out today. I missed a couple today but I’m sure heaps of people missed a couple today,” he said.

January 1st’s anchoring ban saw the Queenslander turn to the short putter with a claw right-hand grip at the start of the 2015/16 wraparound season.

Although he failed to win in a calendar year in 2015 for the first time in many years, Scott has now logged six top-10s in eight events since the switch including three runner up finishes in Malaysia, at the Australian Open and Los Angeles.

Riviera also reinforced Scott’s liking of firm, fast greens – a point he made after a birdie-free second round of 73 on sluggish surfaces at the Australian Open last year, before righting the ship on the weekend with rounds of 68-65 as the green speeds increased.

More and more performances like this will help to convert those in Scott’s legion of fans who still need convincing their man has the flat stick to match his still impeccable long game.

Scott himself however, needs no further evidence that he’s on a path back to the heights he experienced just three short years ago after winning The Masters and reached the world No. 1 ranking by year’s end.

“There is no issue,” Scott said. “ You can always putt better but I honestly believe I will be a better putter than ever going forward and my goal is to be the best putter out here.”