Scott's hard work culminating at Open

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LYTHAM ST. ANNES, England – Of all the things Adam Scott has accomplished in his career it has been his pedestrian record in the majors that has been the most scrutinized.

Since 2000, the Australian has finished in the top 10 just four times at a Grand Slam and never seriously contended before the 2011 season. But that all began to change last year when Scott began scaling back his schedule to better prepare for the majors.

“It wasn't about playing less events, it was about preparing a little differently and more effectively for majors,” said Scott, who birdied the last hole on Friday to move to within one stroke of Open front-runner Brandt Snedeker. “I play better when I practice more. I think it's been effective so far.”

In his last six majors Scott has three top 10s and finished two strokes behind Charl Schwartzel at last year’s Masters. It’s enough to make his solid start this week look less like the status quo and more like something special.

After an opening-round 64 at Royal Lytham & St. Annes, Scott rallied after a slow start on a sloppy Friday to post a 33 on his closing nine and earn a spot in Saturday’s final group.

“It's kind of a culmination of everything I've done over the last couple of years,” he said. “This is the path I've been going down and it just happens to have happened here.”