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Many players compete their entire lives without knowing victory on the PGA Tour. For Sergio Garcia it took 32 professional tournaments to charter win No. 1, though it seemed much longer.
Garcia turned pro in 1999 amid outrageous expectations. And though he was able to win in Europe and was awarded a berth on the Ryder Cup team, it took two full seasons before he finally triumphed on golfs biggest stage.
The then 21-year-old Spaniard fired a closing 7-under-par 63 to win the 2001 MasterCard Colonial in come-from-behind fashion.
I dont feel like it should have taken so much time, Garcia said following his win. I felt I played good enough to win before this. Its been hard, but I think its even sweeter now.
Win No. 2 would came just three starts later at the Buick Classic. He also won this years season-opening Mercedes Championships.
Garcia started the final round in Ft. Worth, Texas trailing Phil Mickelson, the defending champion, by five strokes, but moved into contention with a 6-under 29 on the front nine at Colonial Country Club.
He stalled on the back nine, managing just one birdie, but it proved to be sufficient. Mickelson missed a trio of short putts to shoot 70 and finished a disappointing third. Garcia ended the tournament at 13-under 267, two shots clear of runner-up Brian Gay.
This will be the 55th playing of the Colonial, with all events having been contested at the same venue.
Only one player has successfully defended his title. Ben Hogan won the first two Colonials in 1946 and 47, and the repeated the feat in 52 and 53.
Hogan added a fifth Colonial title to his resume in 1959. He died at the age of 84 in 1997; however, a statue bearing his likeness still greets patrons and competitors at the club.
Of course, Hogan could never have fathomed this weeks payout; the purse is $4.3 million, with $774,000 going to the winner.
Garica has twice tried to defend a title on the European Tour, finishing tied for 10th and tied for 17th.
Full field and tee times for the MasterCard Colonial