Sergio Garcia made an emotional return to place where it all began - his home course, Club de Campo del Mediterráneo – as the Masters Champion celebrated his first Major Championship victory with family, friends, staff, club members and media.
The 37 year old Spaniard, who was accompanied by his parents and his fiancée Angela, showed off the iconic Green Jacket and dedicated his victory at Augusta National earlier this month to all the people who had supported him throughout his career.
Garcia defeated England’s Justin Rose on the first extra hole to become only the third Spaniard to claim the Green Jacket, following in the footsteps of Seve Ballesteros and José María Olazábal.
It has been something of a whirlwind since for Garcia, who has paraded the Green Jacket at various iconic locations including several TV talk shows in America, the top of the Empire State building and on the Bernabéu pitch in front of 80,000 fans prior to Sunday’s El Clásico between Real Madrid and Barcelona.
On Tuesday, Garcia was back at place where it all began when he returned to the club where he played as a junior and where his father Victor is the club professional
“It’s been very intense two-and-a-half weeks,” said the Ryder Cup star. “This welcome here at the club is amazing. This Green Jacket belongs to all of you. It’s an incredible feeling that we should all enjoy.
“Many things and many people came to my mind when I won: my family, my team, my fiancée, her family - all who have supported me over the years. I feel so proud. It’s a dream come true and at Augusta, which makes it even more beautiful. It’s a reward to hard work, consistency and faith. I always knew that day would come.”
“When I was a kid and I was practising here on the putting green, I used to dream about holing the last putt to win The Open, the Masters. It’s a boy’s dream. But these things are not easy. Everybody works hard, and you don’t get anything for free. I’ve said it many times: even without a Major, I think I’ve had a very good career, 19 very consistent years in the world top 15 or 20.
“I always said I did not need to win a Major to be happy, but it helps.”
Garcia’s Real Madrid may have lost Sunday’s match 2-3 to last minute Lionel Messi goal, but the experience was one he will never forget – the latest special moment since his triumph in Georgia.
“Entering that stadium, the Bernabéu stadium, and listening to 80,000, 90,000 spectators cheering and saying Sergio-Sergio, that was so emotional,” he said. “I will never forget it. I thank Real Madrid for giving me that chance and for naming me an honorary member.”
Garcia has another day to remember later this year when he marries his fiancée Angela, who was at Augusta to witness his victory, and he told the gathered audience at Club de Campo del Mediterráneo he is also looking forward to contending in further Majors.
“I’m at a good level now,” he said. “Confidence is high. You never know what is going to happen but I can see myself winning more Majors. I’ve more room to keep improving. You all know how much The Open means to me, would love to win that Major.”