Scott sets scene for first Aussie victory
BY Bruce Young | Australasian PGA Tour | 2007 Australian PGA Championship | Round Two | 07 Dec 2007
Adam Scott takes a one shot lead into day three of the Cadbury Schweppes Australian PGA Championship at the Hyatt Regency Coolum Resort on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast and has created the perfect opportunity to secure his first victory in an Australasian PGA Tour event.
Not that the leading world ranked player in the event has an easy task over the weekend as he will be challenged by the tournament’s second highest ranked player, Rory Sabbatini, and its most successful performer in recent years, Peter Lonard.
There are others who are still very much in the mix but there is little doubt that it will be the leading three players who the crowds will flock to see tomorrow and likely one of them from whom victory is expected.
Lonard and Sabbatini took the tournament lead at 9 under when they finished their rounds just after midday but Scott’s challenge began with two birdies in his first four holes to move within two. His progress continued despite a bogey at the 6th but added birdies at the 7th, 9th, 12th, 15th and 16th before a wind misjudgement at the 17th found him short and in the bunker with his approach and a dropped shot was the result.
The birdie at the 16th came after his group had been warned for slow play but despite that he and his playing partners all birdied the hole.
“I don’t think, given that it was late in the round and that we were moving at the same pace as those ahead, we should have received a warning but they are the rules I guess,” said Scott.
Scott will have the added pressure of winning for the first time in his homeland and proving to an Australian audience that he is capable of performing at home in the manner he regularly does overseas.
This will be his last chance to do so in 2007 as he will take next week off to perform ‘Best Man’ duties at his friend’s wedding while most of this week’s field will be grinding it out at the Australian Golf Club in search of an Australian Open title.
I’m not getting too excited yet,” said Scott. “We are only at the half way stage and I will start to get excited on the back nine of Sunday,” said Scott. “The course was tough in the wind this afternoon but it was a good ball striking round and the putting was solid also.”
“I played well in the first two rounds last week and have not made any alterations other than to continue to work on my set up and making sure I have everything on the right plane.”
David Smail, Scott Laycock and Cameron Percy are at eight under and just two behind the leader while six other players are at 6 under including the first round leader, Michael Sim. American, J.B. Holmes, was doing well until a double bogey at the 15th and a triple at the last cost him five shots in the last four holes and potentially a share of the lead. He finished at five under.
The cut eventually fell at even par, the most surprising victim being Stuart Appleby who improved today with a second round 71 but he was never a chance after his opening round of 71.