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December 10, 2016

Rafa Cabrera Bello

Fanling, Hong Kong

Q. Up-and-down day for you today, what did you make of it?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yeah, exactly like you say. Today, my score has all colours of the rainbow in it. There's been a lot of positives and a lot of negatives. I got off to a good start after the bogey on the first but birdies on 2,3 and 5 is kind of what I was looking for.

But silly bogeys on 6, 7, they ruined a little bit of the tone of the day. I was trying to find a stable day where I was just playing solid like I had these past two days. Staying patient, waiting for the birdies to come and I end up going up-and-down all day. I mean, a good thing, the best thing, is I'm still in it. I'm still leading. Of course it would have been nicer to have a few to spare but I still would have needed to play great tomorrow and I'm still in a position.

Q. An unfortunate 14th hole, probably thought you should have got a drop, but what are you thinking on 15 after that unfortunate double-bogey?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Well, obviously that wasn't cool. I was not very happy with how I played the hole. I took a risk and it didn't work out. Obviously every shot I hit was a little poor, but then, I don't know, I've done other double-bogeys before.

Obviously I was still in a good position. I was trailing by one, so I just had to hang in there. Holed a really long one on 15 and that helped. But really, what you think is just forget about it, focus on your routine, because the more you think about it, the worse it's going to get. And trust me, it can always get worse. So just I fought back hard and put myself tied for the lead again.

Q. You look like you're having a lot of fun with your playing partner, Sam Brazel?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yeah, he's a great guy. I only met him today. We chatted a bit. He's a really cool guy and we did enjoy the round.

Q. What's going to win tomorrow?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: What's going to win? I don't know. I couldn't tell you a number. Probably Sam and I have a say in it, if either of us play good, the others are going to struggle a bit, but then there's a couple guys, I think Tommy and David perhaps, just three and four shots back, so they could have a say. I don't know, it could be 12; it could be 16, so within that area.

It didn't happen exactly what I wanted. I was looking for a more controlled round like I did the first two days, as good as those two. But I didn't want to be bouncing back and forth with bogeys and birdies, not what I was looking for, but it's what I had to deal with today. In the end, not the score I wanted but it's not a bad score at all. I'm still tied for the lead and with all my options open for tomorrow.

Q. You had quite a nasty double-bogey at that point, but then recovered with a birdie. Is it tough to keep your concentration out there?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: It wasn't cool to make the double, of course. I took a risk and it didn't pay out for me. It's happened before and unfortunately it will happen again, also. We just need to stay focused and focus on what we need to do, and that's the best way to bounce back strongly and I did that. I played a good hole and rolled a fantastic putt.

That kind of helped me a little because I didn't really feel I deserved to trail back that much. So those two birdies in the end to get me back to tied for the lead have been very nice, yeah.

Q. You must be delighted where you are end of today.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Delighted isn't the word. I'm relatively satisfied, I would say. It wasn't my goal at the beginning. My goal was trying to hopefully play as good as I had the first two days. Ideally pull off a few clear from the rest of the guys; I didn't manage to do that. I had a tough day. I didn't find my rhythm so good. I didn't find the serenity that I had played with the first couple days, so struggled with bogeys and birdies.

Still, lots of positives. I made six birdies, which are a lot. I just made way too many mistakes, and hopefully I got rid of all of them for tomorrow.

Q. So consistent the first few days, first couple of days, virtually no mistakes at all tee-to-green. Today obviously you made a few more. What was the difference today, do you feel?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: I don't know. I swing the same obviously. Swings don't change from one day to another. Just golf is a weird sport. Sometimes things happen that they just affect your rhythm or your confidence a tiny bit, and you end up struggling.

Some of the bogeys I made, I hit good shots and they didn't quite -- got into bad positions. For example, on No. 9, I hit a good tee shot and ended up just going through the fairway and I got a flyer lie from there.

That's golf. I mean, sometimes it looks very easy and sometimes it looks very tough. Today it looked a bit tougher.

Q. How nervous are you going into tomorrow?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: I'm not nervous. I've been joint leader, I've been leading by myself many times and looking forward for that third win. It's a very common position for me. I'm just confident. I played really good golf this week so far, and I'm hitting, especially my irons, I'm hitting very good.

I'm feeling very confident. So if I can start tomorrow good again and find the calmness that I had the first two days and feel as calm and relaxed as I was on the course, just in control of my game, I think I will be in very good position for tomorrow.

Q. How about the prospects of going out with Sam tomorrow?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: It's fine. I only met him today. He's a very nice guy. The little we talked today on the course, it was very nice. He seems very humble and very fine gentleman. I'm looking forward to playing with him. He played some excellent golf himself, too, so tomorrow will be a very exciting day.

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