The way Adam Scott putted this week at the Australian PGA, you might have thought the anchoring ban had come early.
Scott took 125 putts over the four rounds at Royal Pines and only found himself in a playoff because of his superior ball-striking.
Time and time again he striped his driver down the center, but on four occasions during the playoff with Greg Chalmers he missed a putt inside 15 feet to win. Finally, Scott bowed out with a three-putt bogey on the seventh extra hole.
“The story of the week,” he said afterward, “I didn’t make any putts. I had so many looks. When you have putts to win the tournament you have to make them.”
Chalmers, meanwhile, found the fairway with his driver only once during the playoff but continued to scramble for par and hung around long enough to earn his second PGA title. He needed only 102 putts.
“I have been in that position before and I have made them before,” Scott said. “I know the feeling. You might not get another chance, so when you have them to win you have to make them. But I just didn’t get them in close enough where it was a sure thing to make.”
Unlike last year, when he was one hole away from completing the Aussie grand slam, Scott failed to win any of the three majors this fall. That he finished in the top 5 in all three, despite a balky putter, is a testament to his long game.