Ahead of the SMBC Singapore Open next January, we take a look at some of the great rounds over Sentosa Golf Club’s famed Serapong Course during past tournaments. In our second article in the short series, the spotlight is turned on the spectacular Sunday enjoyed by winner Adam Scott in the 2005 Singapore Open.
The rough was up and the greens were receptive during the final day’s play at the Singapore Open in 2005.
Avoid the former and take advantage of the latter and you were quids in was the theory with Australia’s Adam Scott the one player to stick flawlessly to the script.
It was not so much a great round that won him the trophy that year, more a quite brilliant 22 holes of golf with Scott putting a stranglehold on the title with five birdies and an eagle in an eight-hole stretch.
With rain halting play on the Saturday evening, Scott returned early on the Sunday morning to complete four holes of his delayed third round.
Whatever he had for breakfast seemed to energise him as he birdied three of the four holes for a 67 and a one-shot lead over Edward Michaels of the United States going into the final round.
With Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee and Andrew Buckle of Australia just two shots off the pace in joint third spot, the scene seemed to be set for a great final day’s play.
Scott, though, had other ideas. He produced a a virtuoso performance to lift the Singapore Open title by seven strokes.
He made the kind of start that none of his challengers could live with. Under steamy conditions over the challenging Serapong Course, which yielded only five under-par scores for the championship, the supremely talented Scott virtually wrapped things up within the first four holes.
The Australian nailed a tee shot to two feet at the par three second hole for an opening birdie and then drained a 20-footer at the next for a second birdie. Scott belted a four iron approach to six feet on the par five fourth hole and converted the eagle putt for a five-stroke advantage and never looked back.
Further birdies on the 12th, 15th and 17th holes against a sole bogey at the 16th saw him pick up the champion’s cheque of US$315,000.
“Today, I was smart and had a game plan. I seemed to execute just how I wanted to. It was an ideal final round for me. I got off to a bit of a flyer. It was the perfect start and it was going to make it really hard for anyone to come up and challenge,” said Scott.
“After that start it settled me down straight away. It was not easy but it gave me a bit of breathing space. It allowed me to free myself up. From about the fourth onwards I was really relaxed out there.”
Scott, then aged 25 and ranked seventh in the world, posted a winning total of 13-under-par 271 – seven strokes better than second-placed Lee Westwood of England who signed off with a 68.
Scott’s par-busting heroics helped the Singapore Open find its feet again after a three-year break and the Australian acknowledged that winning a national Open for the first time gave him a great feeling.
“It (Asia) has been great to me. I played a good round of golf this afternoon and there you go, I’ve got this big trophy over here, my first national championship too,” he said.
“Anytime you win you are absolutely thrilled. This will probably have some special meaning to it when I look back at the end of my career. It’s not just my first national Open, I hope there are a lot more to come. It’s something special, whether it is the US, Australian or Singapore Open.”