Sergio Garca sets sights on the Open after Masters triumph

After defeating Justin Rose in a play-off at Augusta, Sergio Garca said the Masters was akin to the Champions League of golf, but that the Open was like the Champions Champions League

After finally burying the majors demon that haunted his career for nearly 20 years at the Masters, Sergio Garca now has his sights set on the Open title.

After four runner-up finishes at majors, the Spaniard finally won one of golfs showpiece titles on Sunday at Augusta, beating Englands Justin Rose in a play-off.

Its better late than never, Garca said in an interview with Radio Marca. I have to continue on the same path. I hope this is not the last.

The Masters is like the Champions League, but the British Open is like the Champions Champions League.

This years Open takes place at Royal Birkdale in July. The Spaniard has two second-place finishes in the event, at Carnoustie in 2007 when he lost in a play-off to Pdraig Harrington and Hoylake in 2014, when he tied behind Rory McIlroy alongside Rickie Fowler.

Garca played in 74 majors before finally winning one, with victory coming thanks to a 12-foot birdie putt at the first extra hole on Augustas par-four 18th.

He said: I hit it where I wanted to. I didnt ask my caddies opinion because the putt fell towards the left. In the five previous holes I had struck the ball very well. I knew there was the possibility of making a birdie in the play-off.

Garcas victory came on what would have been the 60th birthday of his late hero Seve Ballesteros, who died of brain cancer in 2011. Another idol, Jos Mara Olazbal, also won at Augusta.

I dedicated the victory to Severiano. I was able to win in the same place that my two idols had done. Olazbal sent me a very nice message in which he told me that he loved me and that I should have a lot of confidence in myself.

Before the Royal Birkdale event comes the second major of the year, the US Open, which starts on 15 June at Erin Hills.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/apr/11/sergio-garcia-sets-sights-open-after-masters-golf