Paddy in, Garcia out. Harrington wins Claret Jug

Irish star Padraig Harrington (left) beat Ryder Cup teammate Sergio Garcia in a playoff on the fourth day of the 2007 British Open. Harrington entered the 18th hole with a one stroke lead over the leader of the first three rounds, Garcia. However, Harrington limped out of the hole with an unfortunate double bogey. At least, Harrington was able to one putt the hole and give himself some hope of a playoff if Garcia was to falter.

So it was. Garcia entered the final hole needing only a par to capture the Claret Jug. Despite the tremendous pressure, Garcia was able to smash a long iron to the center of the fairway. His approach shot was not quite Van de Velde-esque, but still poor. However, Garcia left himself a great lie in the bunker with a good shot out. The bunker shot was adequate for a decent chance to win, but Garcia was unable to convert with an unlucky lip out.

Thus, Garcia and Harrington were tied at 7 under par. The two Europeans entered a four hole playoff, which came down only to the first when Harrington started strong with a birdie while Garcia bogeyed. After all was said and done, Garcia trailed Harrington by two giving Paddy his first major championship victory.

While Garcia was always the first to come up in discussions of the "best player never to win a major", Harrington could hardly be left out of the conversation. Having captured numerous prestigious European Tour titles, Harrington has been poised to take the big one for some time.

Garcia's (right) final round could scar him for the rest of his career. Sure, he has destroyed numerous high-pressure rounds in the past, but today's failure is a whole new level. Garcia had the opportunity for a dominant wire-to-wire victory, set up with a three stroke lead entering the final round. On a day relatively easy for scoring, a two over par 73 simply doesn't cut it. Who knows if Garcia will be able to overcome this effort in the future?

Regardless, Europe now holds a major championship trophy for the first time in nine years.

2 Response to "Paddy in, Garcia out. Harrington wins Claret Jug"

  1. Anonymous says:

    First victory for Ireland in a major in 60 years. Good work Paddy.

    Anonymous says:

    Tonight .. Irish Eyes are Smiling!!!

Post a Comment

Powered by Blogger