Wining the US Masters is a massive moment in the career of any professional golfer and to slip on the famous green jacket once is a huge achievement. Sergio Garcia was the man with the huge smile on his face following the final round in 2017.

Wining the US Masters is a massive moment in the career of any professional golfer and to slip on the famous green jacket once is a huge achievement. Sergio Garcia was the man with the huge smile on his face following the final round in 2017.

However, to win the Masters twice in succession is a feat only two players have ever accomplished. Nick Faldo was the first to win back-to-back Masters when he did it in 1988 and 1999, Tiger Woods followed in 2001 and 2002.

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 Photo: Sergio Garcia (www.golfweek.com)

When you think of the great names who have won the prestigious tournament multiple times over the years, including Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Phil Mickelson, Tom Watson and Seve Ballesteros, it may come as a surprise that only two players have successfully defended the title but it shows how tough it is to win this event.

In 2018, it fell to Sergio Garcia, who claimed his first major golf championship when he won the Masters last year. The Spaniard named his daughter Azalea after the 13th hole at Augusta.

Garcia looked upbeat on his arrival to play his first round as a defending Masters champions but what happened was totally unexpected.

Having completed the 4th hole on Thursday, Garcia was two under par and looking good as he set foot into new territory as a defending major winner. Three dropped shots followed between holes 5 and 7 but Garcia responded with a birdie on the 9th and everything seemed well.

Another birdie followed on the 12th but there was another dropped shot on the 14th and while Garcia was not at his best, he was doing enough to keep himself in contention for the weekend. However, no one, especially the man himself, could have imagined what was about to happen on the 15th hole.

Garcia eagled this hole on his way to winning the tournament last year and was in a good position to find the green following his first shot. Could another eagle be on the cards?

Garcia played his approach shot, only to see his ball roll off the green and into the water. Garcia tried again, with the same result. On three further attempts, the ball finished in the water and despite taking only one putt to hole the ball once on the green, Garcia carded an eight over par, 13.

The score equalled the worst for any hole in the history of the tournament and Garcia finished the round with a nine over par, 81, leaving him in 85th place.

To his credit, Garcia birdied the following hole but unsurprisingly looked out of sorts for the remainder of his round. Coming out on the second day, Garcia carded a six over par 78, to finish the tournament on fifteen over par and set the highest 36-hole score ever shot by a defending champion.

Garcia is the 11th person to miss the cut as a defending champion at the Masters and will not be the last. The question is, how will the Spaniard respond after such as big setback and the way it happened?

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