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January 17, 2020

Rafa Cabrera Bello

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Q. A 68 to yesterday's 67. Give us your verdict.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Very pleased again for being able to post a really good round. I like how the round went from less to more, as in improving throughout the day and holing some really, really long putts that for sure gave me a lot of momentum. Also playing some very good golf particularly on the last holes.

Q. The putts you holed on 11 and 13 were pretty special. What were you thinking when those were going in?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: On 11 I was just thinking about two-putt, and I don't know, it just went in, and, wow, but 13 went in, as well. Because I had told myself, if it's one of those, that putt is gone for the rest of the year. But then again I don't know, golf is pretty harsh sometimes when the golfing gods want to give you something, then you're just happy to take it.

Q. 9-under after two rounds is a specific start to a new year. What's been the secret to hitting the ground running?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Well, I've pretty much done what I do every off-season. So I had some time off, I enjoyed it and taken my mind off golf, and then I practiced hard at the beginning of the year with David and preparing myself for these weeks.

It hasn't been anything particularly different than other years.

Q. How did you feel today went for you on the whole?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Very pleased obviously for posting another very good score. I felt the round improved throughout the day. My game got better throughout the day, and I played good golf. I made some really, really good putts that gave me great momentum, but then I also hit some good shots that gave myself opportunities. I've been doing things good and I'm having that little bit of luck that you always need.

Q. You bounced back from the bogey with a birdie, one of five to come. Tell us about the putts on 11 and 13.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: The putts on 11 and 13, those felt like those putts go in once every year, and they both went in. I mean, golf takes you -- golf takes away from you more often than it gives you back, but when the golfing gods want to give you a little extra, you're just happy to take it.

Q. You're very comfortable and the Emirates is like a home way from home, so you don't feel alien to anything that you're not used to.
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: No. I live in Dubai, so I don't feel alien at all. I've always said it, it reminds me a bit of the Canary Islands, playing in the sun and in the wind and seeing palm trees, that's how I grew up playing. So it brings back great memories. They are good courses, all of them, superb. It's always interesting conditions, and it's always nice to start the year here, start fresh, and try to play some good golf.

Q. Speaking of the wind, it seemed like when you made the turn, things were starting to change a bit and it got a lot breezier and it was changing direction. How much was that a factor today?
RAFA CABRERA-BELLO: Well, yes, it did pick up. I played better on the back nine, primarily because those two huge putts made the biggest difference, but I mean, we've played here before. We know almost every kind of wind that can happen here, and we want it to be calm but we kind of know that in the afternoons, the wind tends to pick up, and we just have to feel lucky that on the front nine, it wasn't so windy.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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