Rafa Cabrera Bello raring to go on Commercial Bank Qatar Masters return

Rafa Cabrera Bello finished in a share of second place this time last year at Doha Golf Club and it proved to be the catalyst for the finest season of his career so far.

The Spaniard enjoyed Masters Tournament, Olympic Games and Ryder Cup debuts as well as an eighth place finish on the Race to Dubai last year and he’s delighted to be back in Doha on a course he loves for another crack at Commercial Bank Qatar Masters glory.

“2016 was the best year of my career,” said Cabrera Bello who finished tied 19th in his first outing of the year at last week’s Abu Dhabi Championship.

“I was very happy with everything I accomplished last year. I had a well-deserved break, a little bit of time off to get the mind off golf and enjoy other things. But now I’m happy to be back. I was happy to start last week to get the actual calendar year going again.”

Cabrera Bello finished strongly last year with consecutive birdies over the last three rounds as he chased down eventual champion Branden Grace but ultimately ran out of holes, and he believes the key to success here is the ability to control the ball in wind.

“I like it here,” he said. “I think it’s a great test of golf. We normally play in very, very windy conditions here. It’s very testing because the greens can get very dry very fast, very quick, and they are also hard to read with the grain.

“But especially the wind. I think off the tee, it tends to be a forgiving course. But I do like the design. I like the exciting finish it has on the last few holes. I think it’s a very complete and exciting tournament, and the wind factor makes it very challenging.”

Cabrera Bello tees off at 11.20am on the first alongside Alex Noren and Ernie Els.

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