Sergio Garcia vanquished his vital demons in one fell swoop

10:40 AM ET


AUGUSTA, Ga. — You competence consider golf fans uncover adult during a contest watchful for a 20-car pileup, watchful to feel softened about their possess swings, maybe their possess lives, when some worried essence relives Greg Norman’s misfortune calamity on a behind nine. But a Masters has always been about a career-making recovery, not a distressing crash, that is because Sergio Garcia felt like he was personification his home march nearby a easterly seashore of Spain.

The Augusta National throng was perplexing to will him home Sunday to finish his biblical, 0-for-73 drought in a majors, as most as a 2004 throng successfully attempted to will home Phil Mickelson to finish his 0-for-46. This was transparent on a initial and usually hole of Garcia’s playoff with Justin Rose, right after Garcia followed Rose’s Scott Norwood (wide right for a win) on a 72nd hole with his possess Scott Norwood from point-blank range.

On a 18th tee to start this sudden-death duel between good Ryder Cup bros, Garcia winked during Rose’s caddie before a 2013 U.S. Open champ staid over his turn and blinked, promulgation his expostulate into a trees. Garcia afterwards stepped into a box, stared down that famous Augusta National alley that looks tighter than an MRI tube and slammed his turn into a fairway. The fans went wild, and as a 37-year-old Spaniard headed off and adult a hill, they cheered and chanted for him so sexually we would’ve suspicion he’d been lifted in Augusta proper.

They didn’t wish Rose to win. Nothing personal, only business. The business of rooting for a golfer many American fans had loathed and squabbled with over a years. At Bethpage in 2002, when New Yorkers counted his waggles out loud, Garcia flipped one a bird. Two years earlier, after a Buick Classic fan barbarous him by revelation him not to choke, Garcia bending his expostulate and blew a contest and rattled on following about a irritating things people were cheering into his ear.

Asked about his violent attribute over a years with a American golf fan, Garcia spoke of “those hapless dipsomaniac guys that start observant things that shouldn’t be pronounced on a golf course.” But he described Augusta National’s fans, year after year, as “amazing.”

Just never utterly as extraordinary as they were Sunday, when Garcia did what Greg Norman could not: He cowed all of his Augusta National demons and doubts.

“The problem is where my conduct was during sometimes,” Garcia admitted. “I did consider about, ‘Am we ever going to win one?'”

And when he won this epic conflict with Rose, his father all yet danced around a course. Funny, yet before vocalization with ESPN.com on Saturday, a hobbling Victor sat on a dais outward a pro emporium and had a crony work on what seemed to be a crippled ankle.

Yes, winning cures everything.

“I couldn’t ask for anything some-more than winning a Masters,” Victor said. “It’s a best thing ever.”

So no boozed-up fan was listened announcing on Sunday night that he had a same series of vital victories as Victor’s son had. In a entertainment darkness, underneath a rising moon, Sergio smiled proudly as a million flashbulbs bounced off his shiny, immature jacket.

He would reprimand his younger, sillier self for “trying to quarrel opposite something we can’t fight” during Augusta National and beyond. He would contend he was as ease in this final turn as he’s ever been, even yet a right-to-left march still doesn’t utterly fit his eye.

In a end, Garcia said, this delight was “definitely a proof of my impression and my mentality.” It was also a proof of only how most golf fans cite a great, redemptive story over only another fear show.

Nothing worried a new and softened Garcia this week — not a second-round scoreboard follies or a fourth-round misadventures that cost him a lead, and positively not a fans.

“I felt like we was behind in Spain,” Garcia pronounced during his coupler ceremony.

He felt like he was behind in his hometown of Borriol, Spain, behind on his father’s march in a hollow by a sea. Once on a time, immature Sergio Garcia envisioned himself winning a Masters. As it incited out, a grownup existence was distant softened than a boyhood dream.


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