Jon Rahm, four shots behind the lead in Houston

Sergio García positioned himself among the top players at the LIV Houston Open, which began this Friday and will continue until Sunday in Texas

by Andrea Gussoni
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Jon Rahm, four shots behind the lead in Houston
© Getty Images Sport - Tim Warner / Stringer

Sergio García positioned himself among the top players at the LIV Houston Open, which began this Friday and will continue until Sunday in Texas. German Martin Kaymer, Polish Adrian Meronk, and American Caleb Surratt emerged as leaders after the first round, each scoring a -7.

With a score of -6 (seven birdies and one bogey), Mexican Ortiz appeared, while both García (one eagle, five birdies, and two bogeys) and Chilean Niemann (five birdies without bogeys) finished with -5.

Sergio García, results

Spanish golfer David Puig also had a notable performance with a score of -4, while his compatriot Jon Rahm achieved a -3.

The former world number one recorded five birdies and a double bogey. Additionally, Eugenio Chacarra and Colombian Sebastián Muñoz ended with -3, Chilean Mito Pereira finished with -2, and Mexican Abraham Ancer could only manage a +3.

The LIV Houston Open is the last tournament of the controversial LIV Golf Saudi circuit before next week's third major of the golf season, the US Open. Sergio García Fernández, born on January 9, 1980, in Castellón de la Plana, is a Spanish golfer.

Nicknamed "El Niño" (the boy) and turning professional in 1999, he is a member of both the PGA Tour and the European Tour. Following his victory at the 2008 HSBC Champions, he reached the world number 2 position, second only to Tiger Woods.

Currently ranked 128th in the world, García has had a distinguished career. In 2016, he secured his ninth PGA Tour victory by winning the AT&T Byron Nelson. The following year, in 2017, he triumphed at the Augusta Masters after an extraordinary duel with Englishman Justin Rose, which ended in a playoff.

Career: García began playing golf at the age of 3 at the "Club de Campo del Mediterráneo," where his father Victor was a golf professional. At the age of 12, he became a club champion, and four years later, he became the youngest player to make the cut in a European Tour event, at the 1995 Turespaña Open Mediterranea.

This record was later broken by amateur Jason Hark at the UBS Hong Kong Open. In the same year, García became the youngest player to win the European Amateur Championship. As an amateur, he won numerous titles, from the Topolino World Junior Championship (1994) to the European Championship (1995) and the British Amateur (1998).

He turned professional in 1999 after winning the low amateur title at the Augusta Masters, achieving a handicap of +5.4 and an official match-play record of 32 victories and only one defeat. In his first year as a professional, he garnered attention with a spectacular head-to-head battle with Tiger Woods at the 1999 PGA Championship, where he executed his famous shot: an intentional slice from behind a tree, with the ball landing on the green, followed by García running and jumping to see its landing.

García has always been one of the strongest players from tee to green, with a very distinctive swing. He is a key player for the European Ryder Cup team, with 6 victories (2002, 2004, 2006, 2012, 2014, 2018) in 9 appearances and holding the record as the youngest participant in the tournament (in the 1999 edition).

Jon Rahm
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