Rose has Masters determination after play-off defeat
- Author: Julie Sanders Apr 13, 2017,
Apr 13, 2017, 10:58
"Everybody that is around me is helping me, making me not only a better golfer, but a better person", said Garcia.
Garcia and Rose both carded 69 to finish tied on nine-under-par 279 at the end of regulation and send the year's first major to a playoff when both missed birdie putts and settled for pars at the 72nd hole at the August National.
"Without that, I think it would have been very hard to come back".
The 37-year-old Spaniard took the greatest triumph of his career, and a $1.98 million top prize from an $11 million payout, on what would have been the 60th birthday of his idol, two-time Masters champion and three-time British Open victor Seve Ballesteros, who died of brain cancer in 2011 at age 54.
Garcia's legion of fans around the world surely feared another nightmare ending, but this time there was a happy ending for the Spaniard. "He definitely popped in my mind a few times, there is no doubt about it", Garcia said of Ballesteros, who died in 2011 of complications resulting from a cancerous brain tumour. Another idol, Jose Maria Olazabal, also won at Augusta.
"Obviously I am very proud but I feel like the same guy". You've got to put yourself out there.
"He's a great man and we've had a great relationship for many, many years".
Apart from Garcia, Cary Middlecoff is the only who has won both competitions, without going on to win multiple Masters titles.
He missed this one, too, and headed into a playoff against Rose, only this time he didn't lose hope. But in the past, I would have started going at my caddie 'why doesn't it go through and whatever?' But I was like, well, if that's what is supposed to happen, let it happen.
"And some of the moments I've had here at Augusta that maybe I haven't enjoyed as much and how stupid I really was trying to fight against something that you can't fight - and how proud I was of accepting things". But it's happened. Now I don't know if I'll be the best player to have only won one major.
"I don't know, I guess Angela and I have to talk about that", he laughed. "He deserves it", Rose said. To be able to call myself a Masters champion, as they do, and see Jose Maria in the Champions Locker Room and maybe even share a locker with him is going to be unbelievable. "I've had so many good chances and either I lost them or someone has done something extraordinary to beat me".
"We've played a lot of golf together since we were about 14 years old", he said. "That thought changed over the years as I started feeling uncomfortable on the course but I came to peace with it and accepted it".