Sergio Garcia masters Valderrama to defend title


Sergio Garcia successfully defended the Andalucia Valderrama Masters title by a single shot over Joost Luiten, winning the event hosted by his foundation for its first return to the European Tour since 2011.

In its third edition and being hosted by The Sergio Foundation Masters for the first time since Garcia’s win in 2011, the Masters champion was a notable favourite for the title – with a more than enviable record at the typically tough venue. Garcia has only finished outside the top 10 at Valderrama once in his 13 event appearances here, and his latest victory was his sixth on Spanish soil. 

Standing on the 72nd hole with a one-shot lead over Luiten, who had done much to reduce Garcia’s advantage over the course of the day, the Spaniard got a lucky bounce from the trees and despite slipping during his second shot he still set up a birdie chance. As it happened, a tap-in par was more than enough for victory as Luiten settled for a par of his own. 

Sergio Garcia’s four best driving tips
➤ Justin Thomas wins 7th career victory at CJ Cup
WITB Justin Thomas
WIN an outfit worth over £500 from Galvin Green
The best putters of 2017

It had been Luiten who made a first big move up the leaderboard with three birdies on the 5th, 6th and 9th holes, but Garcia rolled in three birdie putts on the 9th, 10th and 11th holes to briefly move three clear of his nearest challenger.

A bogey on the very next hole dropped the Spaniard’s lead to two, before Luiten halved that further with a birdie on the par-four 13th. By the 15th hole they were tied at the top, but a three-putt from the Dutchman on the 16th left him one-back of Garcia, and identical birdie-par finishes left them separated by a single shot after 72 holes.  

England’s Daniel Brooks, who was playing alongside Luiten and Garcia, finished third alone at seven under – two clear of Welshman Jamie Donaldson and three ahead of Australia’s Wade Ormsby. It meant more than just a top five in the tournament however, as all three men moved inside the top 101 in the Rankings to secure their playing privileges for next season.

Highlights: Watch how Sergio won the Andalucia Valderrama masters below

The headlines however belonged to Garcia, who recently announced he was becoming a father next year – adding to an exceptional year which saw him become the Masters Champion back in April. In addition to that, Garcia became an Honorary Life Member of the European Tour on Friday night and with this victory has become a 14-time European Tour winner – making the gap between himself and Tommy Fleetwood at the top of the Race to Dubai rankings that little bit closer.

“It was amazing,” Garcia said. “All three of us played amazing.”

“Daniel played great with everything that he had on the line. Joost played unbelievable. I played really well and I felt like maybe I could get away and he just kept coming back and back and made it an amazing match.”

“The people were unbelievable, amazing, so many people came out and supported, it was really a treat.”

“I want to dedicate this one to my wife Angela and our little baby coming next year in March.”

- Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this page, we never allow this to influence product selections.