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Garcia dedicates home win in memory of Ballesteros

The Spaniard won the Castelló Masters by an incredible 11 shots, ending an almost three-year winless in the process.

Image: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire/Press Association Images

SERGIO GARCIA HAS ended his three-year barren run with victory on home soil at the Castelló Masters in Spain.

The 31-year-old was hot favourite for the title after surging into an eight-shot lead overnight and he completed his amazing weekend with another superb card of 63 to finish on -27.

There was no eagle in his round on Sunday. Instead, the former world number two looked set for a flawless card of eight or more birdies until he dropped a shot on the par-four 17th.

The bogey did little to dampen spirits of the home crowd though, as Garcia was in no danger of letting victory slip, and he ended his day with another birdie on 18, an incredible 11 shots clear of compatriot Gonzalo Fdez-Castano in second (-16).

There have only been two bigger winning margins in the history of the European Tour. Tiger Woods won the 2000 US Open by 15 shots, while South African Ernie Els  triumphed in the 2005 Asian Open by 13.

“That was for Seve (Ballesteros),” Garcia declared afterwards. “It’s hard to say that you expect to fire like I did, but I was feeling good and I’ve been improving all year.

“I would like to thank not only my family and friends, but also my sponsors, everyone that’s around me, for supporting me through two tough years.

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“At the beginning of the week there’s always a little extra pressure because you want to do well in front of your home fans and on your home course. But I felt really good and it showed. Hopefully I can keep moving forward, but there are still some things I can improve on.”

Swede Alexander Noren and Richie Ramsay of Scotland shared third on -15. Thomas Aiken (-14) was fifth with George Coetzee (-12) sixth, both flying the flag for South Africa, while Germany’s Marcel Siem was seventh after a final tally of eleven-under.

Best of the Irish was Michael Hoey, who finished in a share of 20th and on -8. Peter Lawrie’s 69 was enough to earn him some of the prize money assigned for 27th (on -7), with Damien McGrane finishing up on -4 and in a tie for 41st.

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