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Sergio Garcia on Morgan-Leigh Norman, Rafael Nadal and his disappointing year

Angus Murray

After a disappointing year—both personally and professionally—Sergio Garcia says he's ready to climb back in the saddle

GOLF Magazine: You've had a trying year on and off the course. In March, your girlfriend, Morgan-Leigh Norman, ended your relationship. Does the break-up still wear on you?

Sergio Garcia: No, I wouldn't say so. It did bother me for a bit when it happened. It definitely didn't help my game, because I felt my head wasn't where it needed to be. I really didn't feel much like playing golf at that time. I was thinking about other things when I was on the course instead of thinking about playing golf. But I feel better now. I want to be playing again. When I'm out on the course at least I'm thinking about what I want to do. It's just a matter of doing it.

GM: So it was a case of your mind getting in the way of your mechanics?

SG: Yeah, at the end of the day golf is mental more than anything. If you feel confident, if you believe in what you're doing, if you believe in yourself, the technical side is easy. If you have a little doubt, the body contracts and doesn't react as freely.

GM: You're consulting on a course design with Greg Norman in San Antonio, Texas [TPC San Antonio]. Has it been awkward working with Greg after splitting up with his daughter?

SG: Not at all. I still have a good relationship with Morgan. It's just one of those things. I wish it wouldn't have happened, but unfortunately it did. You've got to move on. Greg's a good man. He's a hard worker. I'm looking forward to seeing the course and playing it.

GM: You've had an up-and-down relationship with the media. Are you reluctant to do interviews?

SG: No. Like I've always said, I've tried to be as sincere as I can. Sometimes I'm probably too sincere. If you don't say anything, you guys don't like it. If you say too much, you get blamed for it. It's a thin line, I guess.

GM: Much is made of Tiger's relationship with Roger Federer, but you have a tennis star buddy of your own in Rafael Nadal. Do you and Nadal discuss how to dethrone your respective rivals?

SG: We don't really talk too much about our games. When one of us is struggling or doing well, we send each other texts or talk to see how the other is doing. But we just enjoy our time together—we play golf sometimes, a little bit of tennis, some soccer. Everybody's got their own way of doing things, so what works for Raf may not work for me. I'm not as picky as he is with his little routines.

GM: Can you get a game off him?

SG: No. Tennis is not like golf, because in golf you can play with handicaps. You can actually win against a decent player.

GM: What if he played right-handed?

SG: Yeah, if he played right-handed that would change things. [Laughs.] I'm pretty sure I could beat him.

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