This is What’s Trending Today.
Many sports fans got to know Sergio Garcia of Spain in 1999. He was just 19 years old when he made one of the most memorable shots of that year’s Professional Golf Association (PGA) Championship tournament.
Garcia hit the ball from the base of a tree and over a small hill onto the putting green. He could not see the shot so he ran down the fairway and jumped in the air to see his ball.
Many people were excited to see the young Spaniard, who grew up playing golf along the Mediterranean Sea, offer a challenge to Tiger Woods.
Woods won that 1999 tournament by one shot over Garcia. And then he kept winning. Woods has won 14 major championships.
Before Sunday, Garcia had none.
If you had told sports fans 18 years ago that it would take that long for Garcia to win a major championship, many would have laughed.
Garcia has had a remarkable career. He won many tournaments and helped Europe win five Ryder Cups. He earned almost $30 million playing golf. He has been one of the best golfers in the world for over 10 years.
But in sports, you are not considered among the great athletes if you do not win a Super Bowl, a World Series, a World Cup or NBA Championship.
The same goes for golf. If a player does not win the Masters, the U.S. Open, the British Open or the PGA Championship, he is only “good.”
Now, Garcia is counted among the greats. And it took a great final round on Sunday for him to win the championship.
Garcia’s first shot on the 13th hole was bad. But he recovered to make a par.
That set him up for a good finish, including making an eagle on the 15th hole that tied him with Justin Rose. Both golfers missed putts that could have clinched the tournament on the 18th hole.
On his 74th attempt to win a major championship, Garcia made a long putt in the 19th hole – a tie-breaker -- to finally win his first one.
Garcia said he was glad to have a “happy ending.”
Sergio Garcia reacts after making his birdie putt on the 18th green to win the Masters, April 9, 2017.
He won almost $2 million for his efforts.
And he is no longer remembered as one of the “best players to have never won a major.”
And that’s What’s Trending Today.
I’m Dan Friedell.
Dan Friedell adapted this story for Learning English based on a story from the Associated Press. Hai Do was the editor.
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Words in This Story
tournament – n. a sports competition or series of contests that involves many players or teams and that usually continues for at least several days
putting green – n. an area covered with very short grass around the hole into which the ball must be played
fairway – n. the part of a golf course that has short grass and that lies between a tee and a green
remarkable – adj. unusual or surprising : likely to be noticed
eagle – n. a golf score of two strokes less than par on a hole