Adam Scott slipped up on the par 3s in the PGA National course.
Adam Scott slipped up on the par 3s in the PGA National course. Chris O'Meara

Adam Scott stumbles in PGA Florida event

AUSTRALIAN golfer Adam Scott has spectacularly thrown away his chances of joining the first-round leaders at the Honda Classic.

On a windy day at Florida's difficult PGA National course, Scott made a meal of the par-3 15th and 17th only moments after coming within two of the lead.

Scott plummeted to a three-over-par 73 and will begin Friday's second round seven shots off the lead, set by Sweden's Alex Noren and former US Open winner Webb Simpson (66) at four under.

A shot back sits world No.4 Justin Thomas and he's joined in a share of third by Morgan Hoffmann, Daniel Berger, Mackenzie Hughes and former British Open winner Louis Oosthuizen (67).

Adam Scott keeps an eye on his tee shot.
Adam Scott keeps an eye on his tee shot. Lynne Sladky

Scott was surging up the leaderboard before finding the water hazard from the tee at the 15th and 17th, resulting in a double-bogey five and a triple-bogey six, respectively.

The former Masters winner likened the brutal par 3s to holes at a major championship, where a flawless shot is the only option.

"They are what I call 'holes of consequence', like the 12th at Augusta National where you have to stand up and hit a great shot because there is no bailing out,” Scott said.

"It's disappointing, but not the first time they've derailed me and probably won't be the last.”

Webb Simpson putts out on the 18th hole during the first round of the Honda Classic.
Webb Simpson putts out on the 18th hole during the first round of the Honda Classic. Wilfredo Lee

Scott squandered a solid chance to make a run at Noren and Simpson, having rediscovered some of his ball-striking brilliance, hitting nine fairways from 14 and 13 greens in regulation.

"I like the way I hit the ball; there were some good signs,” Scott said.

"I'm off the morning (on day two) so hopefully I can capitalise on some calmer conditions and get back to even par, but I'm going to have to have a good weekend.”

Tiger Woods was solid on day one, balancing a double-bogey and another bogey with three birdies to post an even 70.

Tiger Woods tees off on the 13th at PGA National.
Tiger Woods tees off on the 13th at PGA National. Wilfredo Lee

"I played hard today, it was difficult out there,” Woods said.

"I had to try and put the ball in the correct spots and there's interesting putts out there for us.

"It was like playing a British Open, I just had to grind it out all day and very happy with it.”

Reigning US Masters winner Sergio Garcia dropped two shots during his 72 and is joined at two over by four-time major winner Rory McIlroy.

Australian veteran Greg Chalmers also struggled during a 74.



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