LIVERPOOL, England — Sergio Garcia plays his second shot on the 9th during The Open Final Qualifying at The West Lancashire Golf Club on July 04, 2023. | Photo by Jan Kruger/R&A/R&A via Getty Images
Garcia, the 2017 Masters Champion, failed to qualify for the 2023 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool and found a scapegoat.
Due to his alignment with LIV Golf, Garcia had only one path to The Open: through final qualifying.
Garcia failed to finish in the top five at West Lancashire, one of the four venues hosting final qualifying across the United Kingdom.
In doing so, Garcia let his anger get the best of him. On West Lancashire’s 16th hole, a 528-yard par-5, Garcia faced a little five-foot putt that he needed to make to have a chance at qualifying.
Distracted by a photographer, Garcia stepped out of line, re-gathered himself, and tried it all over again.
He missed, and then angrily snapped at the photographer.
“D***!” Garcia yelled after the miss, per The Irish Independent. “As if it’s not frickin’ hard enough.”
Photo by Jan Kruger/R&A/R&A via Getty Images
LIVERPOOL, England — Sergio Garcia of Spain plays his second on the 8th hole during The Open Final Qualifying at The West Lancashire Golf Club on July 04, 2023.
To make it to golf’s oldest major, golfers must play 36 holes and finish among the top four at each course.
Garcia played well in the morning, shooting a 5-under 67 on his opening 18 to put him in the mix.
His second round of the day began with three birdies on his first six holes. The Spaniard was rolling and trending to play at The Open again.
Then he drew a bad lie on the short par-4 7th hole.
He made a bogey there and then proceeded to hole just one birdie the rest of the way, carding a 1-under 71.
Garcia finished at 6-under for 36 holes, three shots behind The Open qualifiers, which included Matthew Fitzpatrick’s brother Alex. Two Englishman, Matt Wallace and Matthew Jordan, also qualified for The Open, as did South African Kyle Barker and an amateur from Germany with a familiar first name, Tiger Christensen.
As for Garcia, he will play at LIV Golf’s event in London and then will miss The Open for the first time since 1997.
Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram @jack_milko for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.
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