Rafa Cabrera-Bello, currently the world number 39, the second best-placed Spaniard in the ranking as a result of a number of impressive performances, is another of the must-see players to have confirmed his presence at the Open de España, a European Tour tournament that takes place at the Club de Campo Villa de Madrid from 3 to 6 October.
Cabrera-Bello completes, alongside Jon Rahm and Sergio Garcia, a world-class trio that is currently producing stunning golf week after week on the world’s biggest tours. It is the first time in the history of the event that all three players have been present, making the Open de España, one of the European Tour’s longest-standing events, an even more attractive prospect.
The Canary Islander’s relationship with the Open de España goes back to 2002, when, as an amateur, he produced a sensational fourth-place finish in an event that was won by Sergio Garcia at the El Cortijo course in Gran Canaria. Having received a special invitation, Cabrera-Bello’s stunning performance capped off an outstanding amateur career in which he won all the Campeonatos de España from under-12 to under-19.
A professional since 2006, two Challenge Tour victories – the Man No Open in 2006 and the Suisse Challenge in 2008– opened the door for him to the European Tour where he has three victories to his name – the Open de Austria in 2009, Omega Dubai Desert Classic in 2012 and the 2017 Scottish Open – before contributing to the European team’s victory in the 2018 Eurasia Cup, a set of crowns that mark out a solid career and make him one of the biggest attractions at the Open de España.
“The Open de España is undoubtedly the biggest victory a young Spaniard can dream of. This tournament is truly exciting, for all Spanish golfers it is our fifth major”, he said last year before playing at the Centro Nacional de Golf, where he was followed by hundreds of fans in the same group as Jon Rahm at a competition where he finished sixth in 2009 and eleventh in 2011, at the PGA Catalunya and the RCG El Prat, respectively.
This season, Cabrera-Bello has racked up three Top 10 finishes on the European Tour, at the BMW International Open (third), the Irish Open (fourth) and the Scottish Open (ninth), and a further two on the PGA Tour, both third places at The CJ Cup and the Arnold Palmer invitational, an impressive list, to which we could also add his twelfth position at the WGC-Fedex St. Jude Invitational, a world-class event.