Augusta National, of course, is renowned for its colourful azaleas during the season’s opening major and that is also the name of the 13th hole, which proved critical as the Spaniard landed a hugely popular victory last April.
Garcia was two shots behind Englishman Justin Rose when he drove into some bushes on the left side of the fairway and was forced to take a penalty drop but managed to salvage a par-5 in the final round. Boosted by that, he went on to beat Rose at the first extra hole in a play-off, claiming a first major win at the 74th attempt on the day that Seve Ballesteros would have celebrated his 60th birthday.
Garcia’s wife, Angela, gave birth to Azalea Adele Garcia – the couple’s first child – at 1.54am local time on Wednesday at a hospital in her hometown of Austin, Texas. Garcia, who proudly tweeted a photograph of the new arrival, right, isn’t the first player to mark a Masters win in such a way as three-time champion Nick Faldo named one of his daughters, Georgia, after the state that is home to Augusta National.
Meanwhile, former winners Ernie Els and Jim Furyk have both received special exemptions for this year’s US Open.