Sergio Garcia went from 2017 Masters champion to the loser in a fight with an inanimate object—a shrub—and, according to him, it almost cost him his chance at claiming his second major of the year at the Open Championship.
After a displeasing tee shot on the fourth hole at Royal Birkdale on Friday, the 37-year-old golfer lashed at out a bush following his second shot.
Then Garcia grabbed his shoulder and grimaced.
“I hit [the shrubs] backwards. It was a very weak position, and it felt like the muscles went on top of each other,” the Spaniard said. “So it didn’t feel good at all.
“Sometimes you are out there and you are trying your hardest. When you can’t do it, you get frustrated. We’ve all had this.”
Garcia took a painkiller before the fifth hole, where he cracked a 346-yard drive and hit an eagle to follow a bogey on the painful fourth.
Despite requiring a meeting with medical staff on the seventh hole and feeling sore after the second round on a windy Friday, Garcia shot one of the few rounds in the red, a 1-under 69.
“Obviously I’m not happy about it,” Garcia said of his defeat to a shrub, “because I almost screwed up my British Open.”
He’s tied for 24th in the tournament after two rounds, at 2-over.