Can past champion Adam Scott rediscover his mojo at the Honda Classic?

The Australian has landed just one top 20, and not one top five finish, in over a year as he makes a return to happy hunting ground PGA National.

Either side of New Year 2020 Adam Scott was flying.

He'd ended 2019 with victory on home soil at the Australian PGA Championship shortly before Christmas.

And after taking nearly two months off, he completed back-to-back triumphs in the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club.

He had every reason to be feeling excited about the future, but then it all went horribly wrong.

He was far from the only one to find the rest of 2020 something of a letdown but, if we overlook the wider picture, the 40-year-old's golfing state of mind has to be a concern.

Let's take a closer look at manner in which he has hit the doldrums and also consider whether he's worth backing this week at 25/1 with Paddy Power.

The form issue

Scott has made 14 starts since his victory in Los Angeles last February and, in one sense, he's been very consistent because he's played four rounds in all but one (admittedly two of the events had no cut).

His best finish in that period was T10th at the Farmers Insurance Open in January, but, in addition to that effort, he's reaped another eight top 40s without adding to his top 20 tally.

There are few sweeter swingers of a club than Scott.
There are few sweeter swingers of a club than Scott.

The optimistic might say that hints that he's close to good form; the pessimistic might say he's stuck in the doldrums.

Most recently, on the Florida Swing, he's played twice, made eight circuits and is yet to go sub-71.

Last week at THE PLAYERS Championship he played the par-3 17th hole in sensational fashion through three rounds, having kick-in birdies every time, but then it all turned nasty when he found water on Sunday and made a double bogey-5.

Record in the Honda Classic

His first and most recent appearances (in 2011 and 2019) were ugly: missed cuts both times.

In-between, in four visits, he's been very successful, always landing a top 20 and winning in 2016.

Like most players, the secret to his success here has been a good tee to green game: in those four top 20s he always made big gains on the field Tee to Green; when he missed the cut he lost them.

We know that he likes the test, even though he acknowledges it to be very difficult, saying in 2017: "It's one of my favourite venues. It's a very tough track and a place that really depends on the conditions. In the wind, it's just so difficult."

How to back or oppose him

Paddy Power rate him a 25/1 shot which might not attract too much support given his long term form.

However it's not out of the question that he finds a few extra shots on the field and land a fifth top 20 on the course. That's available at 6/5.

For those who are sceptical of his chances, and believe this difficult test could tip him in the opposite direction, then a missed cut is priced 9/4.

READ MORE: A close look at the chances of the leading contenders at the Honda Classic

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