Rich Beem reflects on Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose's battle at Augusta

Tabitha Dunn
April 15, 2017

Justin Rose was a triumphant competitor and will likely win at Augusta National in the near future, but Sunday belonged to Sergio.

Garcia, a four-time major championship runner-up, has been known to fade when things weren't going his way.

What happened next perhaps was turned the tide in Garcia's favour.

Garcia holed a 12-foot birdie to secure a long-awaited major title at the 74th time of asking at the expense of Rose, who found the pines off the tee and missed the fairway with his second shot. One of his closest calls prior to Sunday had also come at the Angus venue, where he had a putt on the 72nd hole to win the Claret Jug but missed it and then lost out in a play-off to Padraig Harrington.

"That little two-shot swing there was kind of when he was back in the tournament", Rose said.

Five years ago, Garcia claimed he was not good enough to win a major after shooting a three-over-par 75 at the 2012 Masters to drop out of contention. "At 37 Sergio broke the curse that lasted almost two decades since he was second at the USPGA in a battle with Tiger Woods at 19", Madrid's other sports daily AS said in its online edition.

"He deserves it. He's had his fair share of heartbreak".

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The winning putt prompted emotional scenes on the 18th green with Garcia dropping to his knees before embracing his fiancée, Angela, and then heading to the Butler Cabin to be presented with the Green Jacket by fellow European Tour member Danny Willett. But the most important message Garcia received may have come before he took his first swing.

Olazabal was impressed with how Garcia looked during his practise rounds and feels that proved to be a massive benefit when he needed to stay calm on the back nine.

Those words of wisdom set him on his way. But Noren is quietly the No. 12 player in the world and has eight wins on the European Tour, including the Scottish Open and the Omega Masters past year. He left a lasting mark on golf, and a huge legacy for Garcia to emulate.

"It has been such a long time coming". "If I make a couple of putts, it's completely different".

This win makes him the third Spanish person to win the Masters, and significantly, it would've been on Seve Ballesteros' 60th birthday.

Seve's son, Javier Ballesteros, sent out his support for Garcia before the final round. "AT LAST!" declared Marca's front page, while El Mundo Deportivo proclaimed him "MAESTRO".

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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