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Sergio Garcia wants to turn things around at U.S. Open

Sergio Garcia says he feels confident about his chances at the U.S. Open.
(Scott Halleran / Getty Images)

Once the dust clears from his month-long squabble with Tiger Woods, Sergio Garcia is hoping to make headlines of a different kind.

The Spanish golfer, currently ranked No. 15 in the world, says his golf has improved of late and he feels confident about the U.S. Open at Merion this week.

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“Obviously I had my off weeks,” he said. “But I think that the short game is better than it was probably three or four years ago.”

Merion presents a variety of challenges, including the rainy weather. Garcia was able to sneak in 10 holes on Monday and eight on Tuesday, saying the Ardmore, Pa., course has the longest par-three holes he has ever played at a championship.

“Even though it’s not the longest U.S. Open golf course we have played, I think that because of how heavy the course is, it does take a little bit physically on your legs, and then mentally we know how difficult a major and a U.S. Open is,” he said.

As for the rift with Woods, he added: “I’m obviously a little bit nervous.”

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The feud began at the Players Championship in early May when the two played together and Garcia complained about Woods’ lack of etiquette. They exchanged barbs in the weeks that followed, Garcia uttering a racially insensitive comment about inviting Woods to a “fried chicken” dinner.

The players shook hands on the driving range the other day and told the media Tuesday they hoped to put the incident behind them. It could only help Garcia’s chances.

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“I think that things outside of golf have improved until lately, obviously,” he said. “But overall I feel a lot calmer, a little bit more mature, I guess, and all those things probably helped.”

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