PONTE VEDRA BEACH Florida (Reuters) - Adam Scott made the cut right on the number at the Players Championship on Friday, several hours after revealing that he was married in secret to his long-time girlfriend three weeks ago.
The Australian world number two, for several years regarded as one of the most eligible bachelors in global sport, rebounded from a dismal opening 77 to fire a five-under-par 67 in the second round at the TPC Sawgrass.
That left him at level-par 144, and flirting with the projected cutline which was established well after he had left the course.
"I don't think I played that much better to be honest," Scott told reporters after totalling seven birdies, including three in his last four holes. "My putting is not that great. My feel is just way off at the moment.
"Anything outside 10 feet or even closer, six feet, I just don't have a good chance. So I've got to hit a few good shots here and there.
"My pace putting has been poor, and it's a big momentum killer. Even today, I was four under through eight holes and 30 feet away on 18 and I three-putt. All of a sudden I'm putting it in reverse again."
Scott, one of four players competing at the TPC Sawgrass who could dislodge Tiger Woods from the top spot after Sunday's final round, knows he will have to battle hard on Saturday to give himself an outside chance.
"Just grind no matter what," said the 33-year-old from Adelaide. "You know, two rounds like today ... could go a very long way.
"You never know what conditions will be like and what this course can do. Usually a low weekend around quality golf courses like this goes a long, long way, so I'll be grinding very hard."
PUTTING NEEDS SHARPENING
Scott totalled 33 putts in Thursday's opening round and just 26 on Friday, but felt he still needed to sharpen up his touch on the greens.
"That's the only thing that I'm going to be really critical on my game," he said. "Everything else is kind of falling into place where I want it and is up to par, but I'd like to get my (putting) feel back."
Scott sparked a great deal of chatter on the social media networks when he disclosed earlier in the day that he had married his girlfriend, Swede Marie Kojzar, on April 17 during an intimate ceremony in the Bahamas.
"It's official. I am a settled down man and very happy," Scott told Australian Associated Press after finishing his second round. "We just decided to get on with it, we've known each other long enough, let's go and jump right in the deep end.
"It was just our family and a few friends and obviously there are a lot of people we would have liked to have had there who weren't but we decided to have a very low key affair."
Kojzar, a Swedish architect who dated Scott long term in the early-to-mid 2000s before a split of a few years, reunited with the Australian shortly before he won his first major title at the 2013 Masters.
(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Gene Cherry)