AUGUSTA, Georgia (Reuters) - Sergio Garcia has learned that fighting Augusta National is a no-win situation, so the 37-year-old Spaniard is growing to love a course that has not generally been kind to him.
The Spaniard, who is looking to secure a long-awaited first major title, ended the third round of the U.S. Masters on Saturday as joint leader alongside Olympic champion Justin Rose on six under par.
“It’s the kind of place that if you are trying to fight against it, it’s going to beat you down,” Garcia told reporters.
“So you’ve just got to roll with it and realise that sometimes you’re going to get good breaks, like has happened to me a few times this week, and sometimes you’re going to get not‑so‑good breaks.”
Garcia, whose best Masters finish was tied fourth in 2004, will tee off on Sunday which would have been the 60th birthday of Spanish great Seve Ballesteros who died of cancer in 2011.
Garcia grew up idolising Ballesteros, who won the Masters in 1980 and 1983, and another Spanish two-times Augusta champion in Jose Maria Olazabal.
“I don’t even know how much it would mean to be able to join both of my idols as a Masters winner,” he said.
“It would be nice to have a chance and hopefully do it.”
Garcia said he received what he described as a “beautiful” message of encouragement from Olazabal on Wednesday.
“He has a good touch when it comes down to those things,” he said. “It really meant a lot.”
Editing by Ed Osmond