PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – For the third time this year, Adam Scott let a chance to move to world No. 1 slip through his fingers.
The mathematics of the OWGR will likely take care of things for him next week.
Scott was one of four players who began The Players Championship with a chance to supplant Tiger Woods atop the standings, and the Aussie needed at least a tie for 16th. He began the final round in a tie for 28th but shot a 1-over par 73 to finish the week at 2 under and outside the top 30.
“Today I played from the rough, and it’s just impossible to play this course out of position like that,” Scott said. “Just lacking a little confidence with the swing at the moment. You can hit it just a few feet in the rough and you lose control of your golf ball, and then it’s very hard to get it in a decent spot to play the next shot from. That was kind of the way it went for me for about 15 holes.”
While Scott is not in the field for next week’s HP Byron Nelson Championship, an adjustment to his OWGR divisor will allow him to pass Woods in the May 19 rankings without hitting a shot. It’s not the route he would have preferred to the top spot.
“Like I said on Wednesday, I think you want to do it kind of playing well and getting good results,” he said. “That’s just the way our system is, but that’s also not the biggest focus for me at the moment. I’m trying to play some good golf and get myself ready to play the next big event which is in about 4-5 weeks.”
Known for playing a relatively light schedule, the 33-year-old opened the door to possibly adding another event with the U.S. Open looming next month.
“I think I need to play a little bit, potentially might play some more golf rather than go to the range,” said Scott, who is expected to make his next start at the Memorial in three weeks. “I just feel like I should get out on the golf course. I’ll have to decide somewhere over the next few days what I’m doing.”
With the OWGR calculators on the cusp of making him the first Australian to hold the top spot since Greg Norman in January 1998, Scott reiterated that his goals reach beyond divisors and averages.
“I think it’s a nice feather in the cap, probably,” he said. “I mean, if I was never world No. 1 when I’m this close, I’d be disappointed, but I’d also much rather win the U.S. Open and not be No. 1 at all this year. That’s what it comes down to.
“There weren’t rankings back in the day and guys won a lot of majors, and that’s how they were remembered. I guess that’s still somewhat true as well.”