Aussie Adam Scott back in hunt at major

Adam Scott made the turn in 4-under Saturday to pull within one of the lead before ended. He is trying to win his first major after a meltdown at the British Open.

KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. — It’s doubtful that anyone was more disappointed with Saturday’s weather delay at the PGA Championship than Adam Scott.


After all, the Aussie had just rolled in a lengthy birdie putt at the ninth hole to make the turn in 4-under-par 32.

With his third consecutive birdie on the Ocean Course, Scott had jumped into third place alone when the horn sounded at 4:50 p.m. He trails co-leaders Rory McIlroy and Vijay Singh, who are one stroke ahead at 6-under.

Then heavy rains came, and the PGA of America announced play had been called for the day at 6:30 p.m. Scott will return to the course this morning and resume play at 7:45.

The Aussie is trying to accomplish something that McIlroy did a year ago: recover from a blown major in his very next attempt.

In 2011, McIlroy suffered a meltdown on the second nine at Augusta National and blew his Masters Tournament lead. Two months later, he blitzed the field to win the U.S. Open by eight shots at Congressional.

Scott squandered a prime opportunity to win his first major in July at the British Open. He bogeyed the final four holes at Royal Lytham & St. Annes and could do nothing but smile through the awards ceremony as Ernie Els collected his second claret jug.

Scott opened the PGA with 68 on Thursday, and his goal is clear.

“It would be great to put two more rounds together and be coming here Sunday with a good look at the championship,” he said after Thursday’s round. “Otherwise, you know, if I don’t, then I’ll really feel like I’ve let it all slip this year for me. So I’d love to use this opportunity while I’m playing well to get in there and have a sniff on Sunday.”

Scott, 32, has 17 victories between the PGA and European tours. But the hole in his résumé is no major; he has seldom contended.

A tie for second at last year’s Masters and this year’s British Open are his best recent showings in the majors.

Scott started the day at 1-under and remained there with pars on his first four holes. He birdied No. 5, then reeled off birdies at Nos. 7, 8 and 9.

The last one elicited a roar from the gallery, and shouts of encouragement have been common for him since his British Open letdown.

“The support has been tremendous from the fans who have come out to watch,” he said Thursday. “You know, obviously I think all the golfers would have been watching The Open, and it’s nice to hear that support. It’s nice that they want to see me play well and I want to play well for them coming out and watching me.”