Golf

Bill Clinton Was Still President the Last Time Sergio Garcia Missed The Masters

For the first time in a long time, Sergio Garcia will miss out on The Masters after testing positive for COVID-19 following a missed cut this past week at the Houston Open. The 40-year-old Spaniard, who won The Masters in 2017, hasn’t missed a major championship in more than two decades and hasn’t missed out on playing Augusta National since he was an amateur.

Sergio Garcia will miss the 2020 edition of The Masters after testing positive for COVID-19

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On Monday, Sergio Garcia announced via Twitter that he would be missing The Masters after testing positive for COVID-19 and Augusta National made an official announcement as well.

Garcia, who has won 11 times on the PGA Tour and 16 times on the European Tour, missed out on the weekend at the Houston Open by two strokes after rounds of 74 and 71 over the first two days and says he started experiencing symptoms shortly after he arrived at his home in Austin on Saturday. He had a sore throat and a slight cough, both of which continued into Sunday, which led to him and his wife, Angela, getting tested. Her test came back negative but his did not.

When was the last time Sergio Garcia missed a major championship?

As part of his announcement that he’d be missing the 2020 edition of The Masters, Sergio Garcia noted that this week would be the first time in 21 years that he would not be competing in a major championship, which is true.

The last major championship without Sergio Garcia in the field was the 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst, which, of course, is best known for the dramatic finish featuring Payne Stewart and Phil Mickelson. Garcia began his streak of 84 consecutive majors played at The Open Championship at Carnoustie the following month.

With 76 consecutive majors played, Adam Scott, who was recently diagnosed with COVID-19 himself but will be in the field for The Masters this week, holds the longest active streak.

The last time he didn’t play The Masters was in 1998

Sergio Garcia
Sergio Garcia | Andrew Redington/Getty Images

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While Sergio Garcia hasn’t missed a major championship since 1999, the last time he didn’t play The Masters was in 1998, when Bill Clinton was just over halfway through his second term as president of the United States.

Garcia was in the field at Augusta in 1999 as a 19-year-old amateur. He’d won The Amateur Championship at Muirfield in 1998, which earned him the right to tee it up at Augusta, and earned low-amateur honors at The Masters in ’99, shooting 72-75-75-73 to finish tied for 38th. His fellow countryman, Jose Maria Olazabal, won the green jacket that year.

Stats courtesy of Masters.com