Masters official Craig Heatley, a New Zealander, conducted the main post-round interview for the media with 2013 Masters champion Adam Scott, which also included questions from reporters on hand:
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s my distinct pleasure to welcome our 2013 Masters Champion from Australia, Adam Scott.
When I heard the roar down on 10, a second later I heard about 30 million people in Australia and New Zealand all cheering, as well, I can’t even describe the pleasure that it gives me to welcome and congratulate you, Adam, on an awesome performance.
ADAM SCOTT: With that introduction, I don’t know how I’m going to manage. What an incredible day. Everything fell my way in the end, I guess, and you just never know.
I just kept plugging away, and I didn’t know if it was going to happen through nine. But a good back nine here solves a lot and gives you a chance.
It was just great that everything fell into place for me, and I’m just so proud of myself and everyone around me who has helped me. The list is so long, I can’t do thank yous.
But really incredible. I’m a proud Australian and I hope this sits really well back at home, even in New Zealand (laughter). We had the kind of Trans Tasman combo out there with Steve on the bag.
It’s incredible. It’s hard to exactly put it all together in my mind at the moment. It’s a real honor, amazing.
And your dad was here to share it with you, which must have been even more special.
ADAM SCOTT: Amazing that he was here. You know, a hug with him behind the 10th green there when it was all over was something I’ll never forget. And I’d be remiss not to mention my mom, who deserves a huge hug, as well. She’d be back home, and my sister, obviously, too. So just incredible to have him here and share this with him.
Well, we are all delighted, as well. Questions, please.
• • •
Q. Can you just speak to the enormity of what you did for your country? Now you’re a national hero.
ADAM SCOTT: I guess when I get home I’ll find out. But you know, I’ve said it in here before, but we are a proud sporting country, and like to think we are the best at everything, like any proud sporting country.
But you know, golf is a big sport at home. It may not be the biggest sport, but it’s been a sport that’s been followed with a long list of great players, and this was one thing in golf that we had not been able to achieve.
So it’s amazing that it’s my destiny to be the first Aussie to win, just incredible.
Q. You spoke soon after you won the Masters about Greg Norman’s input; can you perhaps expand on that, please?
ADAM SCOTT: Well, I mean, I think I said he inspired a nation of golfers, anyone near to my age, older and younger. You know, he was the best player in the world and he was an icon in Australia. Everything about the way he handled himself was incredible to have as a role model.
And just that was enough, but he’s devoted so much time to myself and other young Australian players who came after him. Incredibly generous. And you know, most of us would feel that he could have slipped a green jacket on, for sure, and I said part of this is for him because he’s given me so much time and inspiration and belief. I drew on that a lot today. I somehow managed to stay in each shot when I needed to.
Q. You said the word destiny. When the ball did not roll back into the pond and when you made the putt on the 72nd hole, at any point did you think, yes, that today is my day?
ADAM SCOTT: I definitely didn’t think if you’re referring to 13, I definitely didn’t think it then. There was so much golf to go and I had no momentum on the day at that point. I was trying to get something to happen. That was a great break.
And everyone who wins gets those kind of breaks not everyone. But you know, that’s a good one obviously, and I made my four. But even going down 15, I really felt like it was far away still. Jason was looking very much in control, and I just was trying to go about my business.
But on 18, for a split second, I let myself think I could have won. Might have showed that when it went in. But you know, I got to see Angel hit an incredible shot from the scorer’s area, and then it was try to get myself ready to play some more holes.
Q. You said at Lytham: When I get back there, I’ll do better. And then you and Angel played virtually perfect golf from 18 in regulation to the playoff. Can you talk about the quality of golf you all were able to play under pressure after what happened at Lytham?
ADAM SCOTT: Well, I only saw two of Angel’s holes. They were pretty good (laughter).
But I played solid today, but I was very, very shaky with my speed control and putts. I was struggling out there with it.
I scared myself on the putting green before I went out with a couple downhillers that I thought were really fast. And I got out there and then with some rain, they slowed up a lot for what I was imagining. They weren’t slow by any means.
I got a bit defensive and felt like I wasn’t being bold enough, and that’s what I tried to do on the back nine, just hit a few putts past the hole, and maybe I’ll pick a line and one will go in. But overall, you know, I played I played 14 really good ones last time, but I played maybe 20 good ones today (smiling).
Q. So many times you’ve had putts at Lytham you’ve had a putt for the playoff and they just haven’t gone in. Talk about the fact that 18, that putt, not the easiest putt, but it goes in, and then obviously the one on 10, Cabrera almost makes. Just take us through what was going through your mind on those two putts.
ADAM SCOTT: Well, on 18, I kind of said to myself in my head, and I’ve said it to between my coach and I a few times, that’s the putt you’ve seen guys hole. O’Meara is the one that comes to mind. That in my mind might have been a bit longer, but that’s the one guys hole. You’ve seen the read. You know it goes a bit right to left. I just told myself to go with instinct; just put it out there and hit it. Show everyone how much you want it. This is the one.
And then 10 was I mean, it’s amazing, because I wasn’t comfortable with my shot into 10. I had to just kind of feather a 6 iron a bit. I was excited, so I knew I was going to hit it hard and I needed to hit it soft. But the putt on 10, I could hardly see the green in the darkness. No, really, I was struggling to read it, so I gave Steve the call over. I don’t get him to read too many putts, because I felt like I was reading good. I said, “Do you think it’s just more than a cup?”
He said, “It’s at least two cups, it’s going to break more than you think.”
I said, “I’m good with that.” He was my eyes on that putt. I started on line and managed to hang in and go in the left half. An amazing feeling.
Q. That’s what I was going to ask. You two spoke for an extended period of time over that putt, way more than normal. Did you talk about anything other than the line? Did he give you any other advice or just the line?
ADAM SCOTT: No. I just needed the line. Like I said, he was my eyes for that putt.
I wasn’t comfortable looking down there. It was really dark, and you know, he’s seen a lot of putts at this golf course; somewhere he might have been able to recall that one. I knew it was a fast putt, so I said, I’m going to hit it to kind of go in the front edge, so I want a line for that. And he said it’s at least two cups. So an unbelievable read (smiling).
Q. How important was it for you psychologically, even though you didn’t win, to play well at the PGA last year after Lytham, to show yourself that you could still do it in majors? And also, when you saw him give you the thumbs up after you hit the second shot, at a moment like that, I would imagine even though you still have work to do, it’s a remarkable feeling; can you talk about that a little? … Going down 10 after you hit your second shot.
ADAM SCOTT: The PGA, well, you know, everything I said after the Open is how I felt, and I meant it. It did give me more belief that I could win a major. It proved to me, in fact, that I could.
And the PGA, I was more motivated at the PGA than, I would say, the Open just a few weeks before. It was to myself now; you know you can do it. The time, there’s not a better time.
And I played well; and it’s one of those things, it’s a knife edge when we came back to finish holes Sunday morning. I made a mess of a couple par 5s around the green and made 6 instead of 4. And that was four shots back instead of leading the tournament. It’s such small things that make a difference.
But it was good to play well, but I knew I would. I was feeling good about it.
Down 10, you know, Angel is a great man, and I’ve gotten to know him a fair bit through Presidents Cups. I played with him a couple times in them and have spent some time with him. I think he’s a gentleman. To do that at that point is very nice, but I think with limited abilities to converse, you know, we would consider each other friends and have a lot of respect for each other.
And he said a great thing to me in 2009 at The Presidents Cup before we all left, and unfortunately we lost that event. But I was on a captain’s pick there and my form was struggling, but he pulled me aside and he said, “You’re a great, great player.” Something I didn’t forget and really nice of him. It’s an incredible camaraderie between all of us out here, and he’s a great guy. And that was a nice gesture down 10.
Q. On 18 regulation, the club you used and distance?
ADAM SCOTT: I hit an 8 iron and I think it was 161 yards.
Q. Want to take you back to Lytham last year, you talked about after you lost there how you didn’t shake your fist, you didn’t scream, you didn’t yell. Just wondering if you can maybe take us through the emotions of today when you first won and then the roller coaster of emotions after you came off 18 in regulation and having to go back in the playoff.
ADAM SCOTT: What was the first part of the question? (Laughter).
Q. The emotions of today?
ADAM SCOTT: Today, OK.
Well, 18, I was pumped. It was a huge moment. That was the one, like I said, I felt I had to seize it right there. This is the chance, put all the pressure on the guy back down the fairway. You know, so I was really pumped and I felt like this was my chance and I took it.
And then, you know, incredible support. I felt there were a lot of Australians out there all week, but incredible support from everyone in the crowd. I really felt they were on my side a little bit in regulation coming down the last couple holes. They wanted me to do something, and that’s a great feeling. I didn’t want to disappoint them, either. I wanted the moment to happen, as well.
Then, you know, going to the playoff was a special feeling. I think going down the 10th fairway was almost deafening, and the crowd wasn’t close. It was a great feeling, and again, I felt like they were really, really pulling for me out there. You know, that is a nice feeling to have when you’re trying to hit some shots at that point.
Q. As much as the British Open last year might have shaped you in majors, you referenced The Presidents Cup. Can you talk a little about 2009 and when your career sort of retreated and how that shaped who you are now and how you came back?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, well, I’ve said it awhile back, but that was a big moment for me. It was kind of gut check time. You know, my game was in a bit of a rut to be fair, and I wasn’t enjoying it so much. But Greg as the captain had a lot of faith in me and belief that I could win a point for his team, and he gave me a pick, and I didn’t want to disappoint him.
But trying to think back to it, what that did was automatically put me into world class situation of playing. There’s no hiding in a Presidents Cup. You have to go out there and you’re playing against the best players in the world, and I used that as a real motivator. And also a way to make myself believe that I’m a great player again. Because if you don’t have that opportunity, sometimes it’s very hard to play yourself out of a rut back up to the top of the leaderboard in a tournament. But I got put in that situation of pressure all over again, and I needed that.
You know, I took the ball from there and ran with it. It was a big boost for me, and then shortly after that, I was playing well again.
Q. On the two playoff holes, did you think Angel’s shots were going in, and the putt on 10, what was going through your head?
ADAM SCOTT: His chip on the first playoff hole was just beautiful, and unlucky not to go in. That must have gone right over the edge of the hole. My heart was about to stop as I was standing at the side of the green thinking, is this it, really? But you know, managed to skid one up there myself and knock it in.
And then he hits a beautiful putt on 10, as well. And you know, those things can just as easily go in as go out. I had a similar putt to him on 10 earlier today, and it was a perfect putt he hit. But you know, I knew that was really then my chance, because it was getting too dark to play any more. Had to finish it (laughter).
Q. Just following on that point you just made, did you feel that you wouldn’t be able to play another hole, this is it, or tomorrow?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, it was certainly getting that way. I know it was just the two of us over to 18 again. But by the time we got to the green, it might have been a bit brighter up on that green. 10 is down there under the trees. It was very hard to read the 10th green. I thought I didn’t want it to happen that we might not be able to finish today. I was thinking about that, like this is a good one to make (laughing).
Q. On 18 in regulation, when you reacted, it looked like you were saying something; do you remember what you said?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah. Come on, Aussie. Yeah, that’s right. I did, yeah. It was maybe a natural reaction. That’s from back in my cricket days probably.
I don’t know if Steve appreciated me yelling that straight toward him (laughter) but whatever. Maybe the one time he doesn’t mind.
Q. Have you thought about what you might say to Greg when you talk to him?
ADAM SCOTT: No, I haven’t had time to think of anything. I’m trying to come up with some good stuff for you guys (laughter) at the moment.
You know, hopefully at some point I’ll get to sit down with Greg and have a chat and go through it all. I’m sure he’s really happy. A phone conversation isn’t going to do it for us. We are really close, and I’d love to share a beer with him over this one.
Q. Did you have any trouble adjusting to the greens because of the moisture? Many players did; you didn’t seem to.
ADAM SCOTT: I was saying that I kind of scared myself earlier today on the putting green, and went out there and left everything short on the front nine, considerably short, most putts. And just had no real feel for it. Obviously I knew they would be slowing up with a bit of moisture on them.
But by the back nine, I said, this is it; this is where you have to be a little bold and just stroke freely, because you’re going to have to make putts to win this thing. That’s just how you win tournaments.
Fortunately, managed to adjust well enough.
Q. The moment you had with your father by the 10th green, is there anything special that the two of you said to each other? And speak a little about his influence in your golf career.
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, I think that’s really fair that you say that, because although Greg was an inspiration to me and a hero as a player, my dad was the one who was always there with me right from the get go. He’s a professional golfer himself, and my mom is a good golfer, too. But Dad coached me until I was 19 years old.
And when we were there down by the 10th green, you know, it was great to see him. And he said, “It doesn’t get any better than this” which is true. It’s a moment that I’ll never forget, being able to hug him just down the back of the 10th green there.
You know, he was the biggest influence on me. He was a great role model for me as a kid, as I think back on it, and the way he balanced everything for me so that I just kind of made my own way a golfer.
Really he did an incredible job of just letting me be who I am and letting my game develop and not standing in my way at times and pushing me when I needed to be pushed. You know, he’s an amazing man that is certainly obviously he’s always there for me, the good times and the bad.
He was at The Open last year and he was as positive as anyone. I’m sure he was gutted inside, but nice that I was able to kind of reward him with this one today while he was here, because he only comes to those two events (laughter).
Q. You won this tournament with two great putts, one on 18 in regulation and one in the playoff. Could you speak to what this win by you now will reshape or further the long putter debate, please? I think four of the last six majors were won with the long putter.
ADAM SCOTT: Well, I don’t know what it’s going to do. We are all waiting to hear what’s going to happen. I don’t know that this is going to impact any decisions at all. You know my feeling on it all; that it was inevitable that big tournaments would be won with this equipment, because you know, these are the best players in the world and they practice thousands of hours. They are going to get good with whatever they are using. It’s inevitable.
I don’t know that is going to have any impact on any decisions upcoming.
• • •
Heatley then began to wrap up the news conference:
Adam, could you please just go through the clubs you hit into 1 through 18.
ADAM SCOTT: Yes. I hit a driver off 1 and it went left. I had to punch a 6 iron from about 145 yards, chip and run a 7 iron and 2 putt for bogey.
2, I hit a 3 wood in the right rough. I laid up with a 6 iron, hit a lob wedge on the fringe and 2 putted for par.
3, I hit a driver down in front of the green and pitched up with a lob wedge from 40 yards to 20 something feet and made it for birdie.
4, I hit a 5 iron onto 25 feet and 2 putted for par.
5, I hit a 3 wood, 7 iron to about ten or 12 feet and 2 putted for par.
6, I hit a 7 iron onto 50 feet and 2 putted for par.
7, I hit a 3 wood and a 9 iron just short and chipped with a sand wedge to a couple feet and 1 putted.
8, I hit a driver, 2 iron on the green, and 3 putted for par.
9, I hit a driver, wedge to ten feet and 2 putted for par.
10, I hit a 3 wood, 9 iron to 30 something feet and 2 putted for par.
11, I hit a driver and a 9 iron to 20 feet and 2 putted for par.
12, I hit a 9 iron to 25 feet and 2 putted for par.
13, I hit a driver and a 7 iron. I chipped with a sand wedge from the bank to a couple feet and 1 putted.
14, I hit a driver and a wedge to 15 feet and 2 putted for par.
15, I hit driver, 4 iron to 25 feet maybe, 20 something feet, and 2 putted for birdie.
16, I hit a 7 iron to 20 feet and 2 putted for par.
17, I hit a driver, 9 iron, I don’t know how far that was, 25 feet maybe, 30 feet, 25 feet and 2 putted for par.
18, I hit a driver, 8 iron to 25 feet and made it.
Playoff holes. What happened?
You putted well.
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, putted well. Driver, 7 iron, short, chipped up and short putt.
Then it was 3 wood, 6 iron into the 10th to 12, 15 feet.
Our 2013 Masters Champion, Adam Scott. Congratulations, Adam.