Adam Scott sitting six off pace at BMW Championship
SIX shots behind a red-hot Hideki Matsuyama heading into the weekend rounds at the BMW Championship, a frustrated Adam Scott has bemoaned a sloppy back nine in the second round.
Matsuyama made a mockery of Medinah Country Club's course record, with his nine-under-par 63 beating the previous number by two shots.
The sizzling round sent the Japanese star to the top of the leaderboard at 12-under after two rounds.
Gifted ball-striker Matsuyama is without a victory in two years after winning four US PGA Tour events between 2016 and 2017, including two World Golf Championship titles.
"It's been a long time since I've been in contention," Matsuyama said. "Hopefully I can play well. I've been struggling for a while this year (and) I need to turn around and have a good weekend."
Americans Patrick Cantlay (67) and Tony Finau (66) are Matsuyama's nearest chasers at 11-under, while Justin Thomas (69) is a shot further behind.
Australian Scott, the former world No.1, picked up two front-nine birdies as he began to reel in Matsuyama.
But he missed a 1.2 birdie putt at the 10th and a 3m birdie at the 11th and never recovered, bogeying the 16th.
Scott said his six-shot deficit would be difficult to make up with soft, wet conditions ripe for Matsuyama to increase his lead.
"No good," Scott told AAP of his position on the leaderboard.
"I was going good until I missed short putts on 10 and 11, and then it was hard work coming in.
"I played good for 11 holes and average. I just have to play better."
Scott's fellow Queenslander Jason Day improved his score by one with a 71 taking him to three under.
Day needs to finish at least tied for fourth at the BMW to move into the top 30, who advance to next week's Tour Championship finale.
Leishman and Scott are already qualified, but Day is in danger of missing the Tour Championship for the first time since 2012.
Day sits one shot ahead of 15-time major winner Tiger Woods, who also shot 71 to sit two under for the week.
"My ultimate goal is to get to Tour Champs - I need to get myself in contention somehow this weekend," Day told AAP.
"It's been a long and frustrating year; especially on the greens. My putting has not as good as it normally is."
Day is also ninth on the International team standings for The Presidents Cup in December, and the eight automatic qualifiers are finalised after the conclusion of the BMW.
Day requires at least a finish of 19th this week to climb back into the eight top eight on the International team standings.
It would be humbling for Day to require a captain's pick, given he has regularly been the top-ranked player on the International team in four appearances at the biennial teams event.
"I'm not even worrying about (the Presidents Cup) right now - I need to get myself somewhere into the mix here at the BMW," Day said.
"It's unfortunate that I'm in this position, but I want to get on the team any way I can.
"Obviously, my preference would be to earn it and give our team the best shot at winning."
Rounding out the Australian contingent is Marc Leishman (71), who sits on one under.