Sergio Garcia and Callaway have gone their separate ways, just two years after the former Masters champion signed a lucrative endorsement deal with them.
Rumours started swirling about 40-year-old Garcia's equipment status when he was spotted at a promotional event in Abu Dhabi yesterday with a bag of mixed clubs that appeared to include a PING driver, new TaylorMade SIM fairway woods and PING Blueprint irons and wedges.
In a statement provided to Golf Digest, Callaway confirmed the news.
"We can confirm Callaway did not renew its agreement with Sergio Garcia for the 2020 season," a Callaway spokesperson said. "We parted on great terms and the option for Sergio to carry Callaway equipment in the future remains."
Speaking to reporters ahead of this week's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, Garcia added:
Asked if this was how he had planned to start the new year, he said: "I wouldn't particularly say that but things happen, and many of the things that Callaway wanted me to do, I couldn't agree to them. Unfortunately we thought the best thing to do
was to go our separate ways.
"There's no hard feelings on any side. At the end of the day, what I want to do is go out there and enjoy what I do. Unfortunately, it just wasn't the fit that we thought it would be for me."
Garcia partnered with Callaway at the start of the 2018 season, bringing to an end his 15-year association with TaylorMade.
At the time, Garcia, who won his maiden major championship using TaylorMade equipment at the 2017 Masters, said that the decision to split hadn't been his decision, adding that he would base his next deal around finding a ball that he liked.
“I would say the most difficult thing to fit into your game would be the ball, when you have played with one for quite a while," he said.
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Garcia got off to a fast start with Callaway, winning his first tournament with his new gear, the 2018 Singapore Open.
However, he has added only two more victories since then and has missed the cut in six of his last eight majors. Last year, he also recorded his worst ever finish on the PGA Tour Order of Merit, finishing in 124th place with earnings of just $878,354. He has finished outside the top 100 on only one other occasion since he first played on the tour in 1999.
The question now is what Garcia's next move will be.
There is some speculation that he might sign a deal with PING, although the brand themselves have denied that any agreement has been reached.
A return to TaylorMade also seems unlikely, even though it's fair to assume Garcia will want to use their ball.
It seems much more likely that he will play as a free agent, allowing him the freedom to pick and choose the equipment he likes, in much the same way as world No.1 Brooks Koepka and Patrick Reed have done to great effect.