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2017 Master’s Champion

Sergio Garcia hitting a shot againt the tree at the 16th hole at the 1999 PGA Championship.

Sergio Garcia hitting a shot againt the tree at the 16th hole at the 1999 PGA Championship.

Garrett Nelson, Reporter

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Sergio Garcia, the 2017 Master’s champion, is one of the hottest golfers in the world. This win at Augusta two weeks ago was Garcia’s first ever Major win. Garcia, before his win at Augusta held the title of “best without a Major.”

Before Garcia’s win at the Master’s her had 30 PGA tournament wins. In his career he has over 400 weeks in the top ten of the world’s top ranked golfers. Garcia’s career earning of over $43 million.

Sergio Garcia turned professional in April, 1999 after posting the lowest score by an Amateur in the tournament. His first win was his sixth start in July, 1999 on the European Tour. His first worldwide show of prominence was a duel against Tiger Woods, in the 1999 PGA Championship where he got second, losing by one stroke. Late in the final round of the tournament, there was one of his famous shots. On hole 16th hole, Garcia had his ball snuggled up against the trunk of a tree with the green tucked out of sight. He took a hard swing with his eyes shut and flew a low fade that ran up onto the green. Garcia sprinted into the fairway and jumped into the air to see where his shot ended up. At the age of 21 he won his first PGA Tour tournament at the 2001 MasterCard Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas and then won again at the Buick Classic in New York the same year. He was the youngest PGA Tour winner since Tiger Woods in 1996 when he was 20 years old.

Sergio Garcia has been a member of the Ryder Cup team since 1999 with the sole exception of 2010. He has a career record of 19-11-7 and has been a part of five winning teams.

Garcia had an astounding year in 2008, but following all of that success he fell into a slump. He was ranked 74th on the PGA Tour money list and all of that negativity stayed with him into 2010. After missing the cut at the 2010 US PGA Championship, he announced that he would be taking a break from golf and that he would be missing the 2010 Ryder Cup.

In 2011 things started to turn around for Garcia. He was outside of the OWGR Top-50 so he was not granted automatic entry to the US Open. He eventually earned a spot by finishing in the top four at a tournament. Garcia played well through all four rounds and finished at tied for seventh at five under par for the tournament. He then finished in the top ten at the 2011 Open Championship at Royal St. George’s. But he was still winless in a streak dating back all the way to 2008. In October 2011, García ended a three-year title drought with back-to-back wins in his home country at the Castelló Masters and the Andalucía Masters. Since this Garcia has been playing great golf for six years. However, until the 2017 Master’s he had never won a major. With his win at Augusta that has ended and with it, one of the only questions about whether or not he was truly one of the “greats” has been answered.

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