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January 19, 2017

Rafa Cabrera Bello

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Q. How did you feel you played today?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: I felt obviously very pleased with my opening round. 5-under, I have taken always. I felt in control of the game. Maybe a couple sloppy swings off the tee but unfortunately got me into trouble on 9 and 13.

But besides that, I really thought I hit the ball good and I putted good. So just really pleased with how I played today.

Q. How close are you to winning? Is it driving you mad because you're that close? Do you just want to get your lips on a trophy?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: I think it's one of those things, you just have to think sometimes many great players, much better players than myself, have gone on longer non-winning streaks.

So I think it's one of those. A couple times I felt that maybe I made a few mistakes; that I have learned from them. Other times, I just felt that the other guys have out-played me. I know I finished second or third many times but not all of them felt like losses. They felt like good comebacks to finish second or third. I feel like I'm close, but we will know soon.

Q. In one word, if you get one, will the floodgates open?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: I hope so. I really hope so, yes. I want to think that way. I want to think that the fourth one won't make me wait so long for it.

Q. Pleased with the start to the round?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Well, I don't think there was a particular key today. I just felt I played solid. Didn't put myself into too much trouble. I missed a couple tee shots and unfortunately got into -- had to take a couple drops. But besides that, the rest was very much under control. Good iron shots, good putting, as well. Very organised playing. Felt in control of the ball today, pretty much for the entire round and pleased with the score.

Q. Three birdies in the first four, does that help you along?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yes, absolutely. After the winter break, it's always a few weeks without competing. Obviously I had been practicing and was fully ready for this week. There's always that small amount of uncertainty that you don't know what's going to happen, so it was very nice to start with a good putt on 1 and to follow it up with another very good two birdies on 3 and 4.

Q. Disappointing on 13, only blemish on the round.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Sloppy swing. Pulled my tee shot and ended up in a bad place. I had to take a drop and just missed a short one. It was just a lot of -- all of the mistakes in the round were on that particular hole. I don't know, it's just golf. Nothing really too over-analyse it. It was just a poor swing that got me into trouble, alongside with a small putt that I missed. That was it. Not really anything that needs to be changed.

Q. You came back, nice way to finish on 18.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yes, it was nice it. I came strong after that. Two great shots into 14 and 15 and not being able to convert, but did the one on 16 and gave myself another chance on 17 and finally a nice 2-putt birdie on 18.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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