Scott starves himself of competition to stay hungry
February 14, 2020
By Ben Everill , PGATOUR.COM
Adam Scott sticks tee shot to set up birdie at Genesis
PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. – Adam Scott feels the prime years of his career ticking away, so the Australian has resorted to starving himself of competition to ensure he’s at his mental peak.
Scott has long taken the less is more approach in regards to playing on the PGA TOUR, but the 13-time TOUR winner now admits he waits until he is missing golf before jumping back into competition.
Set to turn 40 in July, Scott wants to make every week count.
And so, he was not surprised when he rebounded from a 72 on Thursday with a 7-under 64 on Friday at Riviera Country Club to surge back into contention at The Genesis Invitational – his first TOUR stroke play event since the World Golf Championships – HSBC Champions in early November of last year.
It is all part of his mental approach.
Scott is coming up on the four-year anniversary of his last PGA TOUR win. He won The Honda Classic and the World Golf Championships – Mexico Championship in consecutive weeks in early 2016.
Despite staying pretty competitive throughout those years, Scott remained winless around the world until a week after playing in the Presidents Cup last December. It was then he broke his drought by claiming the European Tour-sanctioned Australian PGA Championship.
But rather than leverage that form into jumping straight back out on the PGA TOUR in January, Scott shut things down for family time in Australia. It was a deliberate ploy on two counts. One, to spend quality time with his wife and children. Two, to have his competitive fire build up again.
“I like to starve myself a little bit of competition and make sure that I'm ready to come back out. I think I started getting the feeling like I should start playing around Torrey Pines, once I saw that on television,” Scott admitted.
“I played well there last year (runner up) and it had a pretty good field and I was feeling like, 'okay, I'm starting to miss out being out there.' So that was good to get those feelings… and I knew I would be definitely ready for here.”
Scott won at Riviera in 2005, but rain shortened the event to 36 holes (and a playoff). As such, it is not one of his official victories. He has been runner-up on two occasions, including off a break in 2016.
“The tricky part is you're competitively a little rusty. I don't think my game is, but today my mind switched back on to kind of competing and believing that I'm just going to go out and win and putting myself in that place.
“I am getting older and you just know that you need a break but you also need to come out hungry and wanting it a bit and certainly now for me, I just can’t let week roll into week and tell myself it's going to happen next week. I really need to have it happen this year.”