Written by
Joy Chakravarty, LIV Golf Correspondent
Mar 04 2024
- 4 MIN
Fireballs GC solid showing in Jeddah

KING ABDULLAH ECONOMIC CITY, Saudi Arabia – Fireballs GC were unable to defend their team title at LIV Golf Jeddah, but Captain Sergio Garcia felt the team had a solid outing at Royal Greens Golf & Country Club in finishing sixth.

Garcia was left disappointed by his own second round, when he closed with two bogeys in his last three holes in a 1-over 71 round, but a superb 65, the third-lowest score of the day, helped him finish tied 15th alongside teammate David Puig at 7-under par.

Ancer was the best placed among the Fireballs, tied 12th at 9-under par, but he needed to birdie his last two holes to turn around the final round. The Mexican star had earlier surged into contention with a bogey-free 63 on Saturday.

As a team, Fireballs tallied 23-under.

“We’re not quite there yet, I guess,” said the 2017 Masters champion.

“But hopefully, this the beginning of the year and the guys get going a little bit. Feels like Abraham was trying to find himself a little bit and it’s nice to see him put some good rounds together. David has a lot of potential, and he’s been solid, if not spectacular. Eugenio (Chacarra) needs to improve, without a doubt. And, and I need to improve a little bit as well.

“It’s a solid week, but it could have been much better. I had a good finish today, shame about the round yesterday, because I felt like if I played the way I played today, things would have happened a little differently and I could have definitely got a top-5 finish.

“It’s what it is, and we got to keep working. But I think we are not too far away from a good week.”

Abraham Ancer – T12th – 68-63-70-201 (9-under)

On a golf course where he won the 2023 Saudi International by two shots over Cameron Young by shooting 26-under par, Ancer recorded his best finish of the year after mediocre outings in Mayakoba and Las Vegas.

Ancer’s accuracy off the tee was evident once again and he was second in fairways found, and also sixth in the number of putts made.

The tied 12th place helped him move to 25th place in the individual standings with 7.3 points.

David Puig – T15th – 68-68-67-203 (7-under)

The 22-year-old Spaniard came into the tournament high on confidence, having secured his Open Championship spot by winning the IRS Prima Malaysian Open on the Asian Tour in spectacular fashion with 62-62 weekend rounds.

And while he looked good once again, the aggressive Puig wasn’t able to convert a solid outing into a top-10 finish, courtesy a double bogey in both his weekend rounds – something that he is desperately trying to avoid.

With 17 birdies over the three rounds, Puig was tied second in the number of birdies made. He moved to 26th place in the individual standings with the finish.

Sergio Garcia – T15th – 67-71-65-203 (7-under)

Garcia, who lost in a playoff at the season-opening LIV Golf Mayakoba, opened with a bogey-free 67 and added a lovely 65 on Sunday. It was the second-round 71 that prevented him from a much higher finish.

The 44-year-old Captain closed with two bogeys in his last three holes in the second round, including one on the par-4 13th, which played the toughest hole all week.

Eugenio Chacarra – T48th – 71-69-72-208 (2-over)

The 23-year-old Oklahoma State University alum, winner of LIV Golf Thailand in 2022, continued his quest for his first points this season as he struggled with his iron play and had just one sub-par round to show on a golf course which was yielding enough birdies despite the windy conditions.

Field ranking in parentheses

Fairways Hit
Ancer – 28 (T2)
Puig – 17 (46)
Garcia – 24 (T13)
Chacarra – 21 (T25)

Greens in Regulation
Ancer – 37 (T29)
Puig – 39 (T19)
Garcia – 37 (T29)
Chacarra – 34 (T44)

Total Putts
Ancer – 81 (6)
Puig – 88 (T30)
Garcia – 86 (T17)
Chacarra – 88 (T30)

Total Birdies
Ancer – 16 (T4)
Puig – 17 (T2)
Garcia – 13 (T19)
Chacarra – 8 (T46)

Driving Distance Avg.
Ancer – 298.3 (48)
Garcia – 305.0 (38)
Puig – 323.4 (8)
Chacarra – 322.1 (10)