SHANGHAI (AFP) – Adam Scott has called on Australian Open organisers to let him go head-to-head against Rory McIlroy, who secured the European Tour’s Race to Dubai title Sunday without swinging a club.
Second-ranked Scott finished tied 12th in the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai on Sunday, and said after that he would love to be paired with McIlroy in Sydney for at least the first two days of the event, which begins on November 27.
Masters champion Scott had led McIlroy by a shot going down the final fairway in the 2013 Australian Open, but stunned his fervent home fans at Royal Sydney by missing the green with his second shot and making a bogey, while McIlroy stroked home a 15-foot putt for a birdie and victory.
“It annoyed me for a little while,” Scott told reporters at Sheshan International Golf Club. “To mess up on the very last hole of the last of the four tournaments I played back home last year was very, very frustrating.”
Scott is desperate to atone and would relish the chance to stare down his great rival in a straight duel.
“I believe the organisers should take advantage and put Rory and myself together because it does happen occasionally at US Opens where they pair the players according to their rankings.
“It’s not often we have the world number one and number two ranked players in the same tournament in Australia and it would be fun to do, and I would certainly enjoy that.”
The Northern Irishman is assured of finishing top golfer in Europe for the second time in three years, despite skipping both lucrative “Final Series” events in Shanghai over the past two weeks.
McIlroy’s next appearance, following pulling out of Shanghai to prepare for his upcoming court case against his former management company, will be at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, which begins on November 20.
The world number one will then fly to Sydney, Australia to defend his Australian Open title that he snatched so dramatically from Scott a year ago.
American Bubba Watson’s victory in the WGC-HSBC Champions at Sheshan Sunday, following German Marcel Siem’s victory across the city a week earlier at the BMW Masters at Lake Malaren, means McIlroy cannot now be caught with two events left. PGA Tour golfer of the year McIlroy, with the British Open, US PGA Championship, the WGC-Bridgestone title and the European PGA Championship tucked under his belt in 2014, has amassed 5,400,700 points at the top of the 2014 European rankings.
His nearest rival in the Race to Dubai standings is Ryder Cup teammate Jamie Donaldson. But he is 2,950,000 points behind McIlroy having finished tied 24th at Sheshan, and cannot now catch him.