AUGUSTA, Georgia (Reuters) - Adam Scott is so serious about winning a second green jacket that he left his nine-day-old daughter in Australia to prepare for this week’s Masters.
That sacrifice should reap dividends with a strong performance at Augusta National this week, according to his instructor Brad Malone.
“Adam’s preparation has been excellent and everything looks good, as far as a coach goes,” Malone told Reuters on the eve of the tournament on Wednesday as he walked a practice round with the 2013 champion.
“He’s so comfortable with the golf course and his rhythm is looking nice. Now it’s just a matter of letting it flow.”
Scott’s wife Marie gave birth to daughter Bo on Feb. 15 and the family was reunited only last week when mother and baby finally arrived at their Bahamas home after staying in Australia to complete their immunization requirements.
Scott, meanwhile, played three tournaments on the PGA Tour where he experimented with a regular-length putter. After missing several short putts, he had little hesitation in reverting to the long 48-inch broomstick putter which he used to win at Augusta National two years ago.
“It (the short putter) had to perform incredibly well for him to continue using it while the long putter is still legal,” Malone said, referring to the ban on anchoring a long putter against a player’s chest that starts next year.
”It was a common sense decision. A lot of things he liked with the short putter but now is not the time to play around. There is no point disadvantaging yourself.
“Last year he was number one on tour putting from three feet and third outside 25 feet. That’s a pretty good combination.”
Scott, 34, does not have the distraction of returning to Augusta this year as defending champion, though Malone says that was not a problem last year, when the Australian tied for 14th.
”Adam is very good at focusing on the task, whatever that may be. He’s got a good level of concentration.
“The only difference between this year and last is that this year he didn’t have to prepare the menu for the champions dinner.”
Editing by Mark Lamport-Stokes