Adam Scott admits he is hunting the world No.1 spot back during the FedEx Cup playoffs.
Adam Scott watched Rory McIlroy take golf by the throat and figured why not me, motivating the Australian to a share of the lead at the Barclays at Ridgewood Country Club.
Spurred on by seeing McIlroy steal the world No.1 perch from him with two majors and a World Golf Championship win, Scott figured it was time to show he can also play dominant golf.
The fire in the belly pushed him to an impressive six-under-par 65 in the second round as he tries to defend his trophy at the US PGA Tour’s opening playoff event, leaving him eight under and tied at the top with American Cameron Tringale.
They are one clear of Americans Kevin Chappell (67), Brendon Todd (69) and veteran Jim Furyk (69) who sit seven under.
Jason Day bettered Scott’s round by one with a sublime bogey-free 64, storming his way 67 spots up the leaderboard to six under and a tie for sixth.
“I think you’ve got to draw motivation from wherever you can and I’m not afraid to say that I look at the way Rory played and I want that to be me,” Scott said.
“I feel that I can play like that and have runs like that. You’ve got to learn from the best and he’s one of them. I’d love to get back to No.1 and I think this is a good stretch of golf for me to try and do that.”
While a win this week won’t be enough to get Scott back to top spot on the world rankings it will certainly bring him closer to the Northern Irishman.
Depending on McIrloy’s finish the top spot could be back on the line next week if Scott prevails over the weekend.
McIlroy bounced back from a 74 on day one with a 65 to be tied 27th but just five shots back.
For Day, the round was confirmation the hard practice over the last three weeks since getting an all clear on the injury front was paying off.
“It was really good and I finally got the putter going which was nice,” Day said.
“I also hit a lot of nice shots so really happy to see everything come together. When you do that you shoot a low score and I am very pleased.”
Stuart Appleby, with his position in the playoffs on the line, put together a nice 66 to move to three under, putting him in the box seat to survive to week two of the playoffs.
He is joined by John Senden (71) in a tie for 27th.
Steven Bowditch couldn’t much his performance from round one, shooting 72 to be two under, but still an outside chance should he get hot over the weekend. It was the end of the tournament for Matt Jones (+2), Aaron Baddeley (+2), Robert Allenby (+4), Marc Leishman (+5) and Geoff Ogilvy (+7).
Jones and Leishman are locked into the second week of playoffs regardless but it is the end of the season for Baddeley and Allenby.
Ogilvy faces a nervous wait over the weekend to see if he can hold on to one of the final spots in next weeks field.
Only the top 100 on the points list move on with Ogilvy currently projected to fall just outside the bubble, a number that could change depending on how other players perform on the weekend.