Twelve months ago Scott ended a run of near-misses at the ‘Big Four’ championships by becoming the first Australian to land the coveted Masters Green Jacket and the 33-year-old is hungry for more top-notch titles.
“This week is another opportunity for me to kind of keep moving my career in the right direction,” the world number two told Reuters in an interview on the eve of the Masters.
“I need to keep going, do it consistently for years to build up a resume like Tiger, Ernie and Phil, match the longevity of their careers. Their consistently high level of play is what I’m aiming for.”
Scott, rated by bookmakers Ladbrokes as the 12-1 joint favourite at Augusta National this week alongside Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy, said the early part of his 2014 schedule was all about preparing for a stout defence of the Green Jacket.
“Everything I’ve done this year has been planned carefully so that I can peak this week,” he explained.
“My ball striking is up where I want it to be following some good work I’ve done on the practice range and at home and my competitiveness also came through in the three weeks I played on the Florida swing.
“Getting in contention at Bay Hill showed me I was right on the mark,” added Scott in reference to his third-place finish at last month’s Arnold Palmer Invitational.
The globetrotting Australian has won 23 times around the world and said it was always important to perform well as a defending champion.
“At any tournament you want to put in a good defence but especially so here,” said Scott, a golf brand ambassador for Mercedes-Benz who are a global sponsor of the Masters.
“For me this week is about balancing expectation and enjoying the experience of being Masters champion and hopefully my form is good enough to put me in a similar position to last year.”
Scott said he took added confidence from the fact that his country’s golfing stock was high at the moment.
Jason Day started it all off by winning the WGC-Match Play Championship in Arizona in February before fellow Australians John Senden (Tampa Bay Championship), Steven Bowditch (Texas Open) and Matt Jones (Houston Open) followed up with more victories.
“It’s a tight-knit group of Australian guys on tour,” said Scott. “I’ve known Sendo for a long time and I’ve known Bowdo and Matt since high school days – we’re all round about the same age.
“It all kind of works in cycles. There was a group of us who came through in the mid-2000s with Stuart Appleby, Robert Allenby, Geoff Ogilvy and Rod Pampling when a lot of the guys were winning.
“We then went into a bit of a lull and now we have another crop of guys who have reached a certain level in their careers and have elevated their games.
“The Australian talent is really deep on the PGA Tour, we are doing really well and it’s important that we all keep it going.”
(Editing by Frank Pingue)