BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — The one thing that keeps Adam Scott from getting overly frustrated with his recent play is a green jacket in his closet.
That win at the Masters will make this a memorable year no matter what happens the rest of the way. Scott made it clear Wednesday, however, that he isn't satisfied with one major championship, and he's certainly not satisfied with how he has been playing.
He was three shots out of the lead at The Players Championship going into the weekend until a 75-71 finish. He was on the periphery of contention at the Memorial until a 73 on the last day. He started beautifully in the U.S. Open until a bad finish to his rain-delayed first round, and it didn't get much better the rest of week at Merion.
That's what made last week in the Bahamas so important.
"I really felt like last week the focus went back on when I was on the range at home, and it was really productive again," Scott said. "And it felt like it did before winning the Masters. I think, somewhat understandably, you can get lost a little bit — not lost, but you can just float along. I was playing OK, but it just wasn't quite the same as beforehand. And now there's a purpose again, for sure."
Scott highlights the field at Congressional when the AT&T National, a tournament that already has lost host Tiger Woods because of an elbow injury and Justin Rose because he was wiped out from winning the U.S. Open and then playing the following week.
Congressional is as pure a test as the PGA Tour offers, not surprising because it has hosted four majors, including the 2011 U.S. Open that Rory McIlroy won with a record score in soft conditions. Scott won on this course nearly a decade ago, and it's what brings him back — that and a chance to get his game pointed in the right direction with the British Open a month away.
"I've certainly enjoyed being the Masters champion for the past couple of months," Scott said. "I haven't been too harsh on myself for my performances in the last three events since the Masters. Like I said, I got home after the U.S. Open and I was disappointed. Because after starting so great Thursday, I really just squandered away into the back of the pack. And that was the first time I'd done that in a major in a long time.
"So when I got back on the range that that, the focus came back, and the purpose came back to my practice."
This will be his final event before the next major, and it figures to be quite a test.
Woods won a year ago in a wild week that featured extreme heat, a bizarre storm that toppled trees across the golf course and kept fans from attending on Saturday, and a late surge to get past Bo Van Pelt for a two-shot win at 8-under 276.