Sergio Garcia’s hopes of defending his Masters title lasted 14 pits on Thursday afternoon. Then, they sank in the pond in front of the 15 th green.
Garcia, who edged Justin Rose in a dramatic playoff last year at Augusta National, came to the par-5 15 th at two-over par. His tee shoot observed the fairway. His second shoot landed on the green, but spun off the putting surface, down the slope and into the water.
The Spaniard took a drop-off and hit four consecutive wedge shootings. All of them spun back up the green and into the water. Finally, on his fifth try, Garcia got a shot to stay on the green. He then attained the ensuing putt to bring the hole to a merciful end.
The performance was the talk of social media, with one Twitter user comparing him to Roy McAvoy — Kevin Costner’s character in the 1996 movie “Tin Cup.” In that cinema( spoiler alert ), McAvoy cards a 12 after repeatedly hitting balls in the water in the final round of the U.S. Open.
Garcia’s octuple bogey 13( yes, octuple bogey 13) matched the highest single-hole rating in Masters history. Previous 13 s were carded by Tom Weiskopf at No. 12 in 1980 and by Tsuneyuki “Tommy” Nakajima at No. 13 in 1978.
The nightmare 15 th led to Garcia carding a nine-over 81, leaving him in a tie for 85 th place, a whopping 15 shootings behind the 18 -hole leader, Jordan Spieth.
No one has won back-to-back Masters since 2002, when Tiger Woods won the third of his four green jackets.
The Associated Press contributed to this report .
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