Scott out to bury Sydney hurt against inspirational McIlroy

Wed Nov 26, 2014 12:34am EST
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By Nick Mulvenney

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Adam Scott still feels the hurt of losing the Australian Open title to Rory McIlroy on the final green last year but believes the world number one has also inspired him to become a better golfer.

Scott was set to win a rare "Triple Crown" of Australian titles when he went into the final round at Royal Sydney last year but bogeyed the final hole to allow McIlroy to win his only title of 2013 with a birdie.

"I certainly have a thorn in my side after not winning last year. I did everything but win, I felt like when it came down to it," he told reporters at The Australian Golf Club on Wednesday.

"Even late in the piece I had my chances to kind of close the door, but I left it open and you can't do that with the best players in the world. They'll walk right through and Rory did."

Since then, McIlroy has added the British Open and U.S. PGA Championship major titles to his impressive career haul, while Scott has had just the one victory at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.

McIlroy, who has returned to defend his title this week, said on Wednesday the Australian was "too nice a guy" for a really fierce rivalry to develop.

Scott replied by saying that he found the Northern Irishman inspirational.

"I think I've found that we've somewhat pushed each other along over the last couple of years, Rory has taken his game up a notch and that's inspired me to work harder," he added.   Continued...

Adam Scott of Australia tees off on the ninth hole during the second round of the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament in Shanghai November 7, 2014. REUTERS/Aly Song