By Ben Everill
Adam Scott has produced a 10-shot turnaround to potentially keep his chase for world No.1 alive, moving near the projected cut line midway through the second round of the US PGA Players Championship.
After a terrible five-over 77 on day one, the world No.2 fired a five-under 67 on Friday, making birdie on three of his last four holes to be at even par.
Scott is still a distant 12 shots off the lead held by German Martin Kaymer, who backed up his course record 63 with a solid three-under 69, but the Australian needs only to finish in the top 16 to have a chance at taking over as world No.1.
"I don't think I played that much better to be honest," Scott said.
"My putting is not that great. My feel is just way off at the moment. Anything outside 10 feet or even closer, six feet, just don't have a good chance.
"So I've got to hit a few good shots here and there to get a good chance.
"Hopefully today is good enough to play another couple days, otherwise it'll be disappointing."
Scott's fury at his putting started on the 18th green, his ninth hole of the day, where he was in good shape at four under through his first eight holes.
"I was 30 feet away on 18 and three-putt, and it's a big momentum killer because four under through that nine you're looking good, and get a quick start on one and two the next nine, you could be shooting a really low score," he said.
"All of a sudden I'm putting it in reverse again. So I just need to sharpen that up.'
John Senden produced a solid 69 to move to five under for the tournament, currently holding down a tie for fifth place, but still seven shots off the lead.
Kaymer is five clear of his nearest challenger in American Russell Henley with another shot to Jim Furyk and Jordan .
"I felt like I shot a good score today even though I felt better yesterday," Senden said.
Geoff Ogilvy had an early birdie in his second round to move to four under while Stuart Appleby and Matt Jones sit at two under, also just getting underway.
Players Championship debutant Steven Bowditch matched his 72 from Thursday to join Scott on even par, hoping it is enough to survive while the tournament will be over for Greg Chalmers after a 75 left him five over.