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Punch Shot: How many majors for Garcia?

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Sergio Garcia won this past week in Thailand for his first victory in 2013. But you can't think of Sergio without thinking about what he hasn't won. He turns 34 in January and is still seeking his first major championship triumph. How many majors, if any, will he win in his career? GolfChannel.com writers debate.

By JASON SOBEL

Two.

I’ve been bullish on Sergio Garcia’s major championship chances for a long time now. Even though he’s been testing our patience for years, I’m not ready to give up hope.

Here’s the thing: Great players win majors. There are hardly any great players in the game’s history who have finished their careers without one. The golf gods are benevolent that way – and Garcia knows all about the golf gods.

Now, we can argue the term “great”; his greatness certainly isn’t on the level of a Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson, but a guy who has largely been at the top of his profession for the past decade-and-a-half, who owns 25 career professional victories, who is on pace to be the most successful Ryder Cup player ever on some level has earned that description.

Great players without a major are always underachievers until they win one, at which point they are gallantly hailed as conquering heroes. Just ask Mickelson, who was the same age Garcia is right now when he won his first.

Despite his many trials and tribulations since bursting onto the scene – quite literally – at the 1999 PGA Championship, Garcia is still poised to win a few majors. And in this era, with so many elite players capable of winning ‘em, that number won’t be considered an underachievement when it happens.


By RANDALL MELL

Sergio Garcia will win one major. What works against Garcia also works for him. What hurts him most in the majors will ultimately reward him. His maddening temperament and extraordinary gifts are inextricably linked. The very defiance that gets him in trouble is also what drives him to excel. His stubborn determination will ultimately help him break through his own demon doubts and everyone else's. It will help him persevere through those miserable moments when he can’t help beating himself up


By REX HOGGARD

It’s not that Sergio Garcia can’t win a major championship, his victory on Sunday in Thailand and eight PGA Tour titles make that point clearly enough. El Nino will not win a Grand Slam event because he doesn’t think he can.

No? Take it from the man himself.

“I'm not good enough and today I know it. I've been trying for 13 years and I don't feel capable of winning (a major),” Garcia told reporters after a third-round 75 at the 2012 Masters. “I don't know what happened to me. Maybe it’s something psychological. ... After 13 years, my chances are over. I'm not good enough for the majors.”

Perennially considered one of the game’s top ballstrikers and drastically improved on the greens – he jumped from 144th on Tour in 2011 in strokes gained-putting to eighth in ’13 – the Spaniard is talented enough to win a major; he just hasn’t been mentally strong enough to close the deal.

Maybe that will change. Maybe that improved putting, combined with a more congenial outlook, is the cure for all of the 33-year-old’s Grand Slam woes, but on this his record and his well-recorded rants are rather clear – when it matters at a major Garcia is 0-for-61.