IN A TOURNAMENT where some of the big names struggled, Rafa Cabreba-Bello did his reputation no harm with rounds of 70, 70, 66, 68 for a tied sixth-place finish.
The Spaniard’s 66 on the third day brought him into title contention, but it was just not enough.
Cabrera-Bello’s best performance at the Doha Golf Club (DGC) came last year when he finished as the joint runner-up. Though he did not come close to that, the Ryder Cup star is taking plenty of positives from his Qatar Masters outing as he heads for Dubai for the final leg of Desert Swing.
“I felt I played well. It was just that things didn’t go well for me in the greens as I expected. I gave myself a lots of chances, but I wasn’t able to take advantage of them. But overall, I played well. In Abu Dhabi, I finished tied 19th and here a top-10 position. My game is in great shape going into Dubai. So looking forward to continuing the Desert Swing there,” he said.
Players from Europe have generally enjoyed the windy conditions at the DGC and Cabreba-Bello had his own opinion about the 7,374-yard greens designed by leading golf course architect Peter Harradine.
“The wind is definitely a factor here. The mornings tend to be very calm, and afternoon it really picks up and blows. I think this is a course where you need to be extra patient. When it’s 20, 30 miles an hour gusts, some things are going to happen that isn’t to your liking. You’ll hit good shots that end up way short of the green, or good putts that get hit by a gust of wind and end up missing.
“So just staying patient throughout the day and waiting for your chances is the key to succeed here,” he added.
Cabreba-Bello has not won a European tour title since the 2012 Dubai Desert Classic though he has had numerous runner-up finishes including the one in Qatar last year. He hopes to end his long-wait soon.
“Those runner-up finishes never give me a bitter taste when I remember them. I just know that if I keep putting myself in that position, the win will come,” Cabrera-Bello signed off.