It took 74 starts, but Sergio Garcia finally has his first major victory.
The golf world toasted Garcia on Sunday evening as the man with nearly two decades of Masters experience finally slid on the green jacket.
He finished in top-10 at Augusta three times (2002, 2004, 2013), now has the most career top-10s in majors all-time, and joins his idols Seve Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal as one of three Spainiards to win the Masters.
Justin Rose was a triumphant competitor and will likely win at Augusta National in the near future, but Sunday belonged to Sergio. You could feel it when he was able to save par after a wayward tee shot at No. 13 that required a drop and when he locked on a pair of greens on 14 and 15 to put the pressure on Rose coming down the stretch. That shot on 15 resulted in an eagle putt -- his first eagle in his last 452 holes at the Masters -- that saved his round and ultimately his first major.
Twice on 18, Garcia was the king of the moment, dropping a pair of approach shots that gave him a chance to win the tournament. But before Sergio’s long winning putt dropped, there was a miss from five feet that sent the competition to a playoff.
Rose hit his tee shot to open the playoff into the woods and short of Garcia, then punched out to Garcia’s feet. With a one-stroke advantage on the hole, Garcia went on to deliver another clutch approach into the green and this time buried his birdie putt to win.