Saturday, March 26, 2016

Now in Masters, Cabrera-Bello playing with house money at Match Play

Rafael Cabrera-Bello wore green on Saturday for a reason.

The Spaniard was playing his Round of 16 match at the WGC-Dell Match Play with a lot on the line -- not only a spot in the quarterfinals in the 64-player event but also a spot in the Masters, the only major in which he has never played. With a Round of 16 win, Cabrera-Bello would earn enough world ranking points from this week to crack the top 50 of the Official World Golf Ranking. This week is the cutoff to earn a trip to Augusta National under that criteria.

“Of course that’s in the back of your head, but it’s something that you don’t want to be thinking on the course because that’s only going to add more pressure," said Cabrera-Bello after Saturday play.

He didn't have to think too hard or too long about it. Cabrera-Bello beat Byeong-hun An when An conceded the match with an injury. 

Playing with house money -- again, green -- he went out in the afternoon quarterfinal match and beat American Ryan Moore by a 2-and-1 count to move into Sunday morning's semifinal round against Louis Oosthuizen.

Now that he's in the Masters, Sunday is gravy. He's guaranteed to make $530,000 for finishing no worse than fourth. If he wins, he'll move to 23rd in the world ranking.

Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter.

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