Garcia, Rose headed to playoff

The victory came on what would have been Seve Ballesteros' 60th birthday.

"To be totally honest, I am very happy but I don't feel any different", Garcia said.

His chin was up.

"Congrats @TheSergioGarcia Incredible battle out there" Rose tweeted.

"It's always nice to be a part of history", Rose said.

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

Spieth disappointed, says his round at Masters was freakish: Jordan Spieth played the final round of the Masters precisely how he planned - which is why he couldn't believe his run at another green jacket Sunday turned into one of the worst rounds at Augusta National in his young career.

After the duo made the turn tied for the lead, though, the adage that the Masters doesn't start until the back nine on Sunday proved exactly right.

Garcia overcame a two-shot deficit with six holes to play in the final round - with a stunning eagle on the par 5 15th key to his comeback.

"I knew I was playing well", Garcia said. Four times he was runner-up. The catch was, players selected inherited the odds set by Las Vegas bookmakers and a favorite who failed to make the Top 5 was proportionately penalized while a longer shot got extra credit for making that elite group.

With a keen eye on Garcia in '99 was Ballesteros, who took the young Spaniard under his wing and developed a strong friendship with him in the years thereafter. Garcia sank a testy 8-footer to save par.

Garcia had birdied the first and third and enjoyed a three-shot lead when Rose three-putted the fifth, but the Olympic champion responded superbly with a hat-trick of birdies from the sixth.

The momentum had shifted and Garcia took full advantage, curling in a six-foot birdie putt at the 14th although Rose parred to stay one ahead.

Not since 1998 have the last two players on the course gone to the 18th tied for the lead, and both had their chances to win.

Garcia's approach came within 10 feet, and Rose followed to within 14.

Made most major starts (74) before first major victory at the 2017 Masters. This drive was probably going three yards left of the ones I've hit the other three days, and unfortunately it hit the tree and went in the bush.

Schwartzel finished alone in third after a closing 68, with Matt Kuchar - who had a hole-in-one on the 16th - and Belgium's Thomas Pieters a shot behind. The crowds on the 16th nearly broke the decibel metre this time as Matt Kuchar hit the ideal shot landing it on the bank in the centre of the green and watching the ball feed down towards the hole and eventually it made that 6 inch drop to the bottom of the cup for an ace.

Spieth said prior to last week's event at Augusta that he was anxious to put his double-dunked 7 on the par-3 12th in last year's contest behind him so everyone would finally stop talking about the final-round collapse that cost him the tournament. He had to birdie three of his last four holes for a 75. Fowler shot 40 on the back side and signed for a 76.

AUGUSTA, Ga. - Prior to competing in his first Masters Tournament as an amateur, 18 long years ago, Sergio Garcia played a Tuesday practice round at Augusta National. Garcia said he never minded being known as the best player never to have won a major, because that phrase comes with a partial compliment. And kind of accepting, too, that if it for whatever reason it didn't happen, my life is still going to go on.

  • Julie Sanders