Augusta Masters: Garcia wins first major title

Seve Ballesteros would have been 60 on Sunday, leading Sergio Garcia to reflect on a poignant Masters victory at Augusta.

Published : Apr 10, 2017 08:56 IST

Sergio Garcia reflected on a "special" Masters victory on the day his idol Seve Ballesteros would have turned 60, after defeating Justin Rose in a dramatic Augusta play-off.

Following a final round that will go down in Masters folklore, it was Garcia who triumphed against his Ryder Cup team-mate to finally remove himself from the conversation regarding the best players without a major title.

Prior to his play-off success, Garcia had missed a five-foot putt for the title in regulation play.

But it ultimately mattered not  and Garcia was able to speak about what it meant to join fellow Spaniards Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal in winning the Masters.

"It's amazing, to do it on his [Ballesteros'] 60th birthday and to join him and Olazabal, my two idols in golf my whole life. It's something amazing," said Garcia ahead of receiving his green jacket in Augusta's Butler Cabin.

"Jose sent me a text on Wednesday night telling me how much he believed in me and what I needed to do, and just pretty much believe in myself and to be calm and not let things get to me like I have in the past. 

"Everyone has been great, my family, my fiancee, my parents, her parents, it's great support."

Despite their battle for supremacy creating plenty of tension on an enthralling day, Garcia and Rose were regularly seen embracing and praising one another for good play.

And Garcia said he has nothing but respect for his friend and rival.

"I think at the end of the day we're all trying to win, but we're all people and we have to represent our game," he added.

"We're good friends so we're very respectful of one another, cheering each other on. We wanted to beat the other guy, not the other one to lose it."

Garcia has been critical of Augusta in the past and, following an all-too-familiar collapse after the third round in 2012, stated he would never win a major, before later expressing regret at those comments.

"I have seen [myself winning] it several times. When I came here in 1999 as an amateur, I felt like this golf course was probably going to give me at least one major," he said. 

"I won't lie, that thought changed. I became uncomfortable with the course. But I made peace with it, I accepted what Augusta gives and takes."

Sign in to unlock all user benefits
  • Get notified on top games and events
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign up / manage to our newsletters with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early bird access to discounts & offers to our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment