Garcia, who had been two up after six holes, conceded a 17-foot
par putt on the seventh green after feeling he had taken too long to
take a drop from a sprinkler head on the previous hole with bees
buzzing around his ball.
A stunned Fowler, in return, conceded the Spaniard's seven-footer
for par to halve the hole and went on to win the match one up at
Dove Mountain in Marana, Arizona.
"I don't regret it at all," Garcia told reporters about his generous
act of sportsmanship. "He played much better than me on the last 10
holes and he deserves a win.
"This is a gentleman's game, and lately it hasn't felt like it's
been like that. This is the way I was brought up by my dad, playing
"At least I can leave here feeling good, even though I lost. And
that's all there is to it."
Fowler, who came from three down after eight holes with five birdies
over the closing stretch, was initially uncertain about what was
happening on the seventh green.
"I had to kind of find out what he was asking or offering there,"
said the American. "Took me a few (minutes) to kind of realize. And
obviously I'd be stupid to not take a half.
[to top of second column]
"I was outside of him. He had a good look for par. He had the
advantage there. Anything could have happened. I was ready to make
the putt, put the pressure on him.
"He made a good birdie on eight to go three up. I knew I had my work
cut out for me, and I gave it the best fight I could."
Fowler said that Garcia had explained the reason for his surprise
concession as they made their way to the eighth tee.
"He felt like he had a little bit of a load on his chest after
taking a little time with the drop on (hole) six," said Fowler. "I
really didn't have a problem with it.
"He just said, 'I felt like I took too much time.' I was like,
'Sure, whatever.' I've gotten to know Sergio quite a bit over the
"We've played numerous rounds together. We've been paired a lot
Thursdays and Fridays and into some weekends. We've had a lot of fun
playing together. We did out there today, as well."
(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles;
editing by Gene
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