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July 16, 2017

Rafa Cabrera Bello

Ayrshire, Scotland

CLARE BODEL: Rafa, welcome.


CLARE BODEL: Your first title for five years.

RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yeah, over five years.

CLARE BODEL: You must be feeling pretty good right now.

RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yes, I am. I have been working really hard to try to get the third win again. Sometimes I felt that I have made mistakes, and I mean, I end up not winning. Other times, I felt I've given a good charge, but other people deserved the win.

This time, I really felt I played some of the best golf of my life today. I had an unbelievable Sunday, and I really went for it on the playoff. So extremely pleased that today everything worked out my way.

CLARE BODEL: And it's a Rolex Series event, increased ranking points. That means you've moved up to potentially 14th in The Race to Dubai and the top 20 in the World Rankings. That must feel pretty good right now.

RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yes, of course, I'm very, very pleased. I didn't know exactly those numbers but I know obviously a win gives you a big boost. I am very, very happy for that.

Q. When you're under the pressure of a playoff, for example, how much was your experience of handling the intense pressure of The Ryder Cup last year, how much has that helped you in the situation that you've just come through?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yeah, I mean, obviously it helped. Knowing that I performed good in Ryder Cup, that's one of the most pressure situations in the world, really. That just proves to yourself that you can play good in any condition, in any golf event.

Obviously a playoff is one of those situations. You draw back from those memories, really trust yourself and go for it. I mean, this time it worked out great.

Q. Did it feel easier --
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: No, not really. In the playoff, the only feeling you have -- there's no range for maneuver or something like that. It's a sudden-death playoff and that's it. You play smart, obviously, but you want to go for it, and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. But it doesn't feel easy at all, no.

Q. What were your thoughts when Callum was going through his issues on the 72nd hole? Were you watching on TV?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: I was watching on TV, yes. Obviously it was all in his hands. It must have been frustrating for him because I felt he got unlucky with the ball not rolling back to the bunker. Otherwise it would be him sitting here instead of me today.

But I know for experience, as well, how difficult it is to close events. I mean, he hasn't been up there that many times, or I don't know if he has ever been in the same position as he was today. Sometimes things, don't ask me how, but things do go wrong. I've felt that my own bones more than once, unfortunately.

This time I was -- I mean, I feel a little bit for him because I have been in his case, how you feel, how a tournament perhaps just slipped. I mean, it was under his control and it doesn't turn out the way he wanted without him hitting bad shots. Because I think the driver he hit and the second shot he hit into 18, they were just two great shots.

Q. Was it an advantage for you today that you started four shots back and you went kind of under the radar today?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: No, I don't think starting four shots back is an advantage really.

Sometimes if you manage, playing ahead, if you manage to over-pass the leaders and you are the one leading or you are the one that is setting the pace. Then you could potentially add pressure to the guys coming behind and making it tougher for them to make birdies to catch you.

But that was never the case today. I was trailing; I've been trailing all day long. I mean, I've only caught the leader when he bogeyed the 18th. I don't feel that me teeing off early was any sort of advantage, no.

Q. Could you talk about the two approaches you hit to 18, the first time, did you think it was in the water, and obviously the one in the playoff was a majestic shot.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Yeah, the first time, because I kind of thought for that pin, the bunker wasn't ideal. So with me trailing, I wanted to go for it. I just got a little bit ahead of the ball and then obviously the wind caught it and it just started drifting.

When I saw it fly, I thought that I was going to miss the water on the right. I still want to see the replay of the shot, because I don't know whether it bounced left of the creek and stayed or it bounced right and then just bounced over the creek miraculously just to stay out of the water.

But the second shot is different. I mean, you're in a playoff situation, and you kind of like just go for it, hoping the best. Obviously I didn't want to miss it right, of course. But I mean, both shots, I just commit to the shot. I had no doubts in my mind. One of them, I executed it perfectly. The other one, I missed the shot.

Q. Under the circumstances, the one in the playoff, was that one of the best shots of your life?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: For sure. For hitting -- I think I had 252 metres to the pin, something like that. Hitting a 3-wood on a playoff to ten or 12 feet, I think that for sure qualifies as one of the best shots of my life, yes.

Q. How did you find the course and the spectators here? This is the first time this venue has hosted the event.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: The spectators have been fantastic. Even seeing yesterday the rough day it was, having so many people as we had for the conditions we had. I mean, golf in Scotland is huge and we always feel great support from the local crowd, and I think the venue has proven to be a very exciting venue.

I said always that I loved it off the tee. Perhaps some of the greens, a little too much slope to my ideal, but the course has treated me very nicely. It's just become one of the special places in the world for me.

CLARE BODEL: Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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