Scott eyes golf's holy grail at St Andrews

·3-min read

Adam Scott says he's in the best head space in years as he strives to add golf's "holy grail" to his already-decorated career CV.

Australia's former world No.1 and first and only winner of the Masters admits he'd love nothing more than to become the country's first British Open champion at St Andrews since Kel Nagle in 1960.

"Winning a major is special," Scott said ahead of Thursday's much-anticipated start to the 150th Open - and first at the home of golf since 2015.

"And then there are a couple that maybe have an asterisk next to them because they just maybe carry a little bit more importance and significance and respect and all those things and this is it.

"And I tend to agree with Rory (McIlroy) that this probably is the Holy Grail of golf.

"And whether you're an Australian or Northern Irishman, or from Scotland, it might be the pinnacle of this sport, what's happening here this week.

"For anybody winning, it's hard to put anything up against it."

Scott, who turns 42 on Saturday, has been oh so close at the Open on multiple occasions.

As well as his heartbreaking second at Royal Lytham and St Annes in 2012, when he blew a four-shot lead with four holes to play, Scott boasts two other top-five finishes among five top-10s in total.

He even hit the lead last time around at St Andrews seven years ago with a sizzling front nine only to finish tied for 10th.

"I finished really poorly but I probably teed off never really thinking I was the favourite on Sunday," he recalled on Wednesday.

"But you just never know around here because you can get lucky with the wind and you can get a few good breaks here and there and you get a few up and down and all of a sudden you're seven under through 12.

"It's possible and, if you can hang on, you can come from a long way back. Hopefully, I can put myself more in the mix this time and have a real good chance."

As always, Scott has enjoyed a meticulous preparation for his 85th consecutive major, the longest streak by any active player, after arriving a week before the first round.

"I've done everything I want. I feel really comfortable with the golf course, it's the last crack at a major for this year and it's the biggest and it's the best," Scott said.

A tie for 14th with fellow Australian Marc Leishman at last month's US Open at Brookline is also serving as a timely confidence booster for Scott.

"There was so much good stuff," Scott said. "Overall it was one of the most solid US Opens I've played.

"So I've tried to carry that over and generally my head's in the best space it's been a couple of years, to be perfectly honest."

Scott and Leishman will play the first two rounds together with American Dustin Johnson.

"It's just a nice pairing because we know each other well," Scott said.

"I like DJ too. I've played a lot with him. He's a guy I enjoy watching play and I can definitely feed off him.

"It's a great group for me - the 150th Open at St Andrews, I've got a great group and I'm here and playing good so I'm excited for what's ahead this week."

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