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Adam Scott started his Open Championship as he did in 2006 at Hoylake with a four-under-par round of 68 to leave himself within striking distance of the leaders.
It was a typically strong opening round from Scott, but having seen how he has finished the last two Open Championships, he won’t be getting carried away.
“It’s a good start,” said Scott. “I’ve got a long way to go, 36 holes to put myself in a position. So I’ll just be grinding the next two days. If I keep swinging well I think I’ll give myself enough chances to be there. Like I said Tuesday or Wednesday, I’ve kind of got to make it happen when I’m playing well at the moment.
“This has been a big focus for everyone in my crew this year. We felt we’ve been close the last couple of years and obviously to win the Claret Jug is such a huge thing. Our mind has been firmly set on Hoylake this year and doing well here.”
Scott was well placed after finishing the front nine four-under-par, but a turbulent back nine which featured three birdies and three bogeys prevented him from pushing on to take the overnight lead.
“Most of the front nine you’re getting some assist with the wind,” he said. “Then you get to 11 and you turn straight back into it. It was tougher this afternoon, for sure. The wind kicked up a bit and the back nine played very tough coming back into it most of the time and then in and across, and all of those kind of things make it very demanding but I positioned it off the tee really nice today.
“18 was messy but there were a couple of short putts and a couple of par-5s I didn’t take advantage of, and from a good position. But to keep pace with an early lead is important, I think.”