DEFENDING Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open champion Rafa Cabrera Bello will attempt to defend his crown when the competition comes to East Lothian in July.

The world number 21 has confirmed his place among the field as the event returns to Gullane Golf Club for the second time in three years on July 12-15.

Cabrera Bello, who went undefeated in his Ryder Cup debut at Hazeltine National in 2016, previously enjoyed victory at the 2009 Austrian Golf Open and 2012 Omega Dubai Desert Classic, and went on to post a further six second place finishes before sealing the biggest win of his career in Scotland.

And the 33-year-old is looking forward to returning to defend his title.

He said: “I can’t wait to return to defend my title at the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open.

“The victory last year was a special one, and it was the first time I had won in a play-off too. Over the last round I was in contention but chasing the entire day, so it was a nice feeling to win like that.

“I love playing links golf and always enjoy the Scottish Open.

"In the past few years it has been in a great position just before The Open and has prepared us in the best way.

"The win last year really helped with my confidence going into it."

This year the Scottish Open once again takes its place on the European Tour’s Rolex Series, a premium category of tournaments on the Race to Dubai, each with a minimum prize fund of US$7 million.

The 36th staging of the internationally renowned event will be played in its traditional slot in the week before the 147th Open Championship at Carnoustie Golf Links.

The Scottish Open is returning to Gullane for the first time since 2015, when American Rickie Fowler took the title.

With music, entertainment, children’s activities and food and drink outlets showcasing local produce, all complementing the world-class golfing action on Scotland’s Golf Coast, it’s a perfect day out for all the family

Fans can buy tickets, from just £15, to see some of the world’s best golfers – including official Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open hospitality packages – at