Poor finish spoils Garcia’s day

Sergio Garcia was left frustrated after a poor finish to his second round at the Players Championship left him five shots back.

The Spaniard, who won at Sawgrass back in 2008, was six under par with seven holes to play after a fourth birdie of the day, only to bogey the next two holes and then drop another shot at the eighth to fall back down to three under for the tournament.

He eventually signed for a 72.

“It’s disappointing, simple as that,” said the 35-year-old. “When you come off the course on a difficult golf course shooting 72 and it feels like you shot 78 it’s disappointing.

“So it’s a shame, but hopefully we can find something for the weekend somehow, because I feel like I’m playing quite well. For the difficulty of the course, I feel like I’m striking the ball nicely. I’m giving myself a lot of birdie chances and I’m chipping quite well, but I need to get the ball in the hole somehow.”

Joining Garcia on three under is Swede Henrik Stenson. His eventful, second-day 69 featured eight birdies, three bogeys and a double-bogey at the iconic, island-green 17th after he duffed a nine-iron into the water.

“I played pretty nicely, got off to a good start and made some nice birdies early on to be back in the ball game and then I hit a bad swing. I was a little uncommitted on 17 and dumped a three-quarter duffed nine-iron into the water,” he said.

“But we kind of moved on and my putting was good all day long, hit some good putts, both for par and a couple of nice ones for birdie as well.

“It’s just working on a few things with my long game in those gusty conditions, and if you don’t quite feel comfortable over the ball or making a bit of a bad swing it is going to cost you. I had a couple of tee balls and a couple of approach shots that put me in trouble, but all in all, I’m happy with the day’s work.”