Adam Scott seems to many like the nicest guy, but to me he is a scoundrel who will go to any lengths to win.
A few years ago Steve Williams, his caddy, made racially insensitive remarks about Tiger Woods, his former employer. Many felt that Williams comments were so bad that Scott should definitely fire him. Instead, Scott, whose response was essentially no response, kept Williams because he knew his chances of ever winning a major depended largely on retaining the world’s best caddy.
Then, when he couldn’t regain his lost putting touch, he opted for the most grotesque looking putting stance in pro golf, firmly anchoring his putter to his chest while sticking his left arm out in front of him. It was obviously within the rules, so the majority of fans (based on numerous polls) who hate anchoring, had to grin and bear it while Scott prevailed in a playoff at this year’s Masters.
A few weeks later Glen Nager of the USGA issued their ruling on anchoring – it would become illegal at the beginning of 2016. To Scott, that meant that he (and his henchman) had 11 majors to add to his legacy before he would have to abandon his long wand. Or would he? Here is Scott’s view on the change he plans to make:
“I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing and deal with it then,” he said. “I don’t think there will be anything much for me to change. If I have to separate the putter a millimeter from my chest, then I’ll do that. … My hand will be slightly off my chest, probably.”
While Scott’s anchoring is still legal, it is now, officially, against the spirit and tradition of the game as voiced by Nager in his address on the ban:
“Rule 14-1b protects one of the important challenges in the game – the free swing of the entire club. The traditional stroke involves swinging the club with both the club and gripping hands held away from the body, requiring the player to direct and control the movement of the entire club. Anchoring is different: Intentionally securing one end of the club against the body, and creating a point of physical attachment around which the club is swung, is a substantial departure from that traditional free swing.”
So, any player who continues to anchor after the ban is violating the spirit of the game, something which Scott cares nothing about as he continues his all out quest for Ws in the majors. And he may get them as he is currently leading the PGA deep into his second round as this is being written.
Should he win, however, in the history book that I plan to write, his entry will contain an asterisk, as it should.
2013 PGA – Adam Scott*
*Used an anchored putter in opposition to the tradition of the game as expressed by the USGA and R&A