Adam Scott says he is not worried about switching from the anchored putter he’s relied on the past five years to a standard putter, but should we believe him? The short answer is no.
Scott has use an anchored putter since 2011, but the Australian golfer will no longer be allowed to employ one starting on January 1, 2016, in accordance with the rules.
He’ll still use the broomstick putter that he’s had in his bag since the Masters in April this weekend at Whistling Straights for the PGA Championship. But this is the last time we’ll see him with his controversial crutch in a major tournament.
He spoke about the upcoming challenge to abandon his anchored putter, via Ben Everill of Yahoo! Sport 7 in Australia:
“I’m really not worried about the putter change in the future. I don’t have a fear at all of it being a bother whatsoever. I believe if I practice it a lot I will get really good at it.”
Never a particularly strong putter, regardless of the style he used, Scott still believes his window for winning major championships is wide open for the next five years, at least. He touched on his dodgy putting, saying:
“Look, it’s not like I hole everything every week with the long one either, I have been frustrated with that this year and the whole rule change is bizarre and unjustified to me, but it is what it is and I’ll do my best with whatever I come out with.”
Truly, it is remarkable that Scott has done as well as he has, being a mediocre putter—his outstanding ball-striking has been his saving grace. However, it is crystal clear he has found more success as it relates to major championships with the long putter than the standard variety.
Consider this from The Express, before the 2015 Masters :
“In 39 Majors with the short putter Scott finished in the top 15 five times; in 16 Majors with the long one he has done so 13 times, winning the 2013 Masters.”
Scott improved upon those numbers with top-10 finishes in the 2015 U.S. Open and The Open Championship. There was a reason he made the switch in the first place—he has never felt at all comfortable using a standard putter.
He’s been one of the world’s most steady performers in majors since 2011, when he made the switch originally. It’s going to be fascinating to see if Scott can continue putting up top-10 finishes or if he ends up flaming out following his obligatory switch.
Given his outstanding overall game, a flameout isn’t likely in the cards. However, it would be a safe bet to assume he will not be nearly as consistent without the long putter, which could eventually lead to a decay in the rest of his repertoire due to a drop in overall confidence.
Long story short: This upcoming switch is going to hurt.
Photo Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports