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July 20, 2012

Adam Scott


MIKE WOODCOCK:  We have Adam Scott with us.  Adam, you're one off the lead now, another great round today.  You must be very pleased.
ADAM SCOTT:  Yeah.  Very pleased with the round today.  Again, a bit of a slow start, but built my momentum from 7 onwards and played fairly well from there.  I didn't take on any unnecessary risks and kept the ball in play pretty well.  So kind of stress‑free, but certainly felt good out there today and something to build on for the weekend.

Q.  When you saw the soft conditions the last two days, did you change your game plan to get more aggressive?
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, you can go after more pins, but the game plan off the tee hasn't changed much.  Some of the clubs that you hit off the tee certainly have because the fairways are softer, but not to hit it in a different spot, still kept the same game plan in that respect.
But just like the 18th hole, I mean a flew my 9‑iron right to the hole and it stops within a yard or so of where it lands.  That was not really expected at the start of the week.
So it's probably an easy adjustment going back to regular golf than having to adjust to having some understanding of how far the ball is going to run here on a firms links course.

Q.  Not that you've never been there, but at a major, right at the lead, just the two of you, there's a big gap down to 3 and 4.  How do you feel and why do you feel like now is the time for you to get to this place?
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, I think it's‑‑ why I've played good this week is it's kind of a culmination of everything I've done over the last couple of years.  I feel like this is the path I've been going down and just happens to have happened here that I've put myself in good position after two days at a major.  And first time at the Open in this kind of position going into the weekend.
And I've seen it's been close all year.  There have been lots of good rounds and a few ‑‑ just the one every week that kind of sets me back.  So getting off to the good start was important.
But I think it's just the practice adds up and eventually pays off.

Q.  You guys are five and six shots clear of everybody else at the moment.  Does that mean less after 36 holes on a links course than it possibly does at even another major or Tour event?
ADAM SCOTT:  Maybe, yeah.  I think you look at the names that are five and six shots back and it means even less again.
So it's a world‑class leaderboard, stacked up a few shots back, and I think no matter what the conditions are tomorrow, one of those guys is going to have a good day and make up ground.  So we certainly have our work cut out, Brandt and myself, to stay ahead of that pack.

Q.  You've been in the past I think‑‑ you've got 21 wins and in all of them you started very well and you've played ‑‑ maybe the second round hasn't been great, but you've certainly always been at or near the top; it's not like you sort of shoot 62 on a Sunday to come from nowhere to win.  Does that make you feel more comfortable now that you're here in this position?
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, I mean, that just seems to make sense to me, really, because if you're playing good on Thursday and Friday and Saturday and you're leading you're playing better than anybody else that week.  So it seems to make sense that you can go on to win because you're playing good.  It's not often that I've led a tournament not playing very well.  Everyone else is too good, you know?  So that seems to make sense to me.  I like that.
At some point to win a tournament you're going to have to be out in front, unless you shoot 10‑under the last day and come from way back.  So you'd better get comfortable with that position.  I like that, and usually when I'm in that position, like I said, I'm feeling comfortable because I'm hitting the ball well and things are under control, it's not just a fluke that I'm up there.

Q.  You mentioned that over the last two years you're kind of building up to this, due to different things you've done.  One of the things you've done is change equipment in regards to putter.  Can you just talk a little bit about that, because obviously there's always a conversation about the longer putter in majors and even though it would be a long putter in your case, but the belly putter, as well, I just want to know your thoughts on that and how much that's really changed your ability to be more effective in your rounds?
ADAM SCOTT:  Yeah, it's brought more consistency to my putting.  My putting with the short putter was so hot and cold, and before I switched it was more often cold than hot.  So very, very frustrating to play well and get nothing out of a round.  Certainly making the adjustment to putt with a long putter took a little bit of time, but it was effective once I brought it out on Tour.  And I feel much‑‑ I putt much more consistent with it, which has a really positive effect on the rest of my game.  Takes a little pressure off the rest of my game.
So when my game is on, the putting just helps put together what a round really should be, what kind of score I should be shooting rather than not making the most of it.
So for me it's certainly a confidence thing at the moment, but also it's just a consistency thing.

Q.  I was just wondering, is the fact that so many different guys have won the majors over the last three and a half years, has it made it seem so much more achievable?
ADAM SCOTT:  Yeah, you could look at it like that, and you can also look at it as there are more guys who have the ability to win.  It's harder to win.  I think you've got to give everyone who's won one in the last few years some credit because the talent pool is definitely building fast, and it's going to be harder and harder to win.
But these are guys you compete with every week pretty much.  It's the same guys, just a different venue and a different trophy at stake.  Obviously a lot of emphasis on the majors.  So if you can balance out all those pressures, sure, you can think yeah, why not me.

Q.  How many bunkers have you been in in the 36 holes?
ADAM SCOTT:  I think two today, yeah.  I hit it in two greenside bunkers today.

Q.  When you're in the situation where there's two of you, there's always a danger of potentially playing a match play style situation.  Is that a danger for you?  And also, did you notice Brandt's score before you went out?  I think he had already gotten to 10‑under.  Did that change your mindset at all?
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, I don't think I should get into match play with only Brandt tomorrow.  I just have to play my game.  It's certainly not the last round.  And I should be just out there playing my game and trying to do the same things I've done the first two days.  It's been really effective.  I didn't look at the leaderboard before I teed off.  I knew, I think, before I even left the house Brandt was at 7‑under.  I kind of assumed that I wouldn't be leading when I teed off today.  That doesn't matter, that's normal in these tournaments.  I saw that he was 10‑under after a few holes and I just had to stay patient and wait for my opportunities because they're hard to come by, before you get to the 7th, really, for me, and build some momentum for the last 10 or 11 holes.

Q.  Compare how you feel or how you feel in playing through these two days with how you felt at Bridgestone, through the first couple days?
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, things have felt better for me this week leading in.  I felt my game was good.  When I went to Bridgestone last year I was a little shaky, I was a little off with my game and somehow it just turned around out there.  I got in a rhythm and the confidence came quickly.
But I felt really good coming in here.  I played well at AT&T, my last outing, and I had really good days on the range before I came up here.  And I hit the ball well in all my practice rounds and got a good feel for the course.  So I felt very confident coming in here.  But Bridgestone last year I was struggling a little, to be honest, and it just all kind of came about on the golf course Thursday, and took it from there.

Q.  Have you ever felt this in control of your game before in your career?
ADAM SCOTT:  Yeah‑‑ yes, I have.  I mean, but I feel, again, right now it's more consistent, generally.  Everything is a little better.  But at times I've played as good as this, for sure.  But I think I do it more often now.
And it's just important to try and make the most of it each week, which is what I haven't done in the past.  And certainly putting with a bit of confidence is helping that.

Q.  The leaderboard watching thing, how much do you normally do that?  And I know it's only the third round tomorrow, but how much will you look, considering the guys that are behind you?
ADAM SCOTT:  I don't mind watching leaderboards, but there's no real point to do it at this stage of the tournament.  I'll probably have a look at some point tomorrow and see what's happening.  But it's really not going to affect how I play the golf course tomorrow.  If I'm having a good day or a bad day, I'm going to have to pretty much do the same things out there and try and take advantage when I'm in position to do so.  Very hard course to force anything on.  So I'm not going to change my game plan by seeing what somebody else is doing.

Q.  How much do you think it's importantmemory in golf?  Do you think it's better to have a short one or a long one?
ADAM SCOTT:  A memory?  Probably a very short memory is good.  I think you definitely want to put away any bad memories and just look forward.

Q.  What did you try to accomplish by changing your philosophy about scheduling, playing less events?  Do you feel like you've accomplished what you wanted to do?
ADAM SCOTT:  It wasn't about playing less events, it was about preparing a little differently and more effectively for majors.  And I felt to do that, I needed a little more time to practise at home on the range, on the course, whatever practice is needed or even practice at the site.  And so with that, I've had to cut out a couple of events.  And it's not about not wanting to compete or not being at those events, it's just purely about having a little more focus on the major tournaments.  And I feel I play better when I practise more.  And I think it's been effective so far.
Last year certainly my results were better in the majors, and this year, too, already.  So I feel if that's putting me in a better frame of mind coming into these things and confidence‑wise, then I'm doing the right thing.

Q.  You got a very warm ovation from those famous Open grandstands around the 18th green.  How much did you notice that as you were walking up, and how do you feel about that?
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, it was fantastic, the first time this week coming up with the grandstands almost full.  The best 18th hole in golf is always The Open Championship.  It was, it was great.  Really warm reception and a few Aussie flags even hanging on them.  So good to see them supporting.
But it is, it's an experience that every golfer‑‑ I wish every golfer could have and I think probably a good one for Alan (Dunbar) today, the guy who I played with.  Something for him to remember.

Q.  Your decision to start scaling back your preparation and focusing more towards the majors, how much influence did Stevie possibly have on that?  Because it seems like a familiar schedule to what he used to work for his old boss.
ADAM SCOTT:  Well, I kind of put it in place at the start of last year before I was working with Steve.  But he certainly agrees with it.  He likes it.  And he sees that I'm doing the right stuff when I'm not playing the events.  He can see the work I'm putting into the game, so he's fully on board with that.  I mean, which you need, you need everyone to be on board with what you're trying to do, otherwise it's hard work working together if you're not agreeing on the way you're going about it.
MIKE WOODCOCK:  Thanks very much.  Best of luck again.

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