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Champs to be crowned Sunday at Newcastle's Surfest



Sofia Mulanovich : photo Michael Tyrpenou/ASP Australasia

2009 Surfest

Mark Richards Pro ASP 2 Star WQS Mens event
Maitland Toyota Open ASP 2 Star WQS Womens event
Merewether Beach NSW
18 - 22 March 2009

Live Coverage  |  Results/Photos/Videos etc

Finals day tomorrow with two champion’s to be crowned in Newcastle

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 21 March, 2009 : - - South Bar Beach, NSW -- ASP World Tour rookie Drew Courtney (Umina, NSW) remains the only ASP Dream Tour surfer in contention to win the Mark Richards Pro final set down for tomorrow afternoon.

But it’s a different story at the Maitland Toyota Open, where ASP World Tour pairing Sofia Mulanovich (Peru) and Rebecca Woods (Gold Coast) both remain in contention. A three-time winner at Newcastle, Woods defeated Tasmanian Dara Penfold in a low scoring affair. Mulanovich easily outclassed Kirstie Jones and booked herself a match up in tomorrow’s finals against Kiwi Airini Mason.

Surfers were again confronted with a disappointing lack of solid surf at Merewether, and organisers were forced to move the event back to South Bar Beach for the second day in succession.

With the swell at times offering little more than waves of half-a-metre, surfers who managed to find the waves included South African Travis Logie (17.5), and the Aussie pairing comprised of former world tour surfer Jarrad Howse (16.25) and Drew Courtney (16).

Logie remains the only non-Australian surfer left in the Mark Richards Pro, following today’s defeat of Kiwi Richard Christie and Tahitian top seed tormenter Tamaroa McComb (11.7), who was bundled out of today’s quarter-final heat by Clancy Dawson (13.15) from Kingscliff  in northern New South Wales. 


Nick Vasicek : photo Michael Tyrpenou/ASP Australasia

Dawson went into his heat against McComb full of confidence and was pleased with the result. “I wasn’t that nervous. I knew he’d be beatable even though he’s a great surfer, I felt pretty decent,” he said. “I’ve been to this event a few times, starting as a junior and I have been on the QS for the last couple of years. This is definitely my best result and I’d love to go all the way,” said Dawson.

He has his eye firmly on the opposition, and reckons those with experience at the elite level will be toughest to defeat. “I’d say Drew Courtney and Jarrad Howse are the ones to beat.  I’ll be up against Jarrad in the next round.   “They’ve both got really good backhands and we’re surfing lefts so this is going to be really dangerous. “But my philosophy is everyone’s beatable and that’s what I’ll go out there thinking,” said Dawson.

Howse gave a lesson in just how elite tour experience can work in a surfer’s favour when it comes to exploiting the priority system in the man-on-man heats that have been running in the Mark Richards Pro since the round of 64. This is the first time many of the competitors have had to battle out man-on-man tactics.

With less than three minutes remaining in his heat against Sunshine Coaster Noah Lane  - who was holding priority - Howse waited for Lane to surrender his priority through inexperience. Howse pounced and racked up a 9.25 to take the heat and show the never-say-die attitude that is essential in man-on-man competition.


Michael Spencer : photo Michael Tyrpenou/ASP Australasia


Phillipa Anderson (Merewether) and Sam Lendrum (Catherine Hill Bay) remain the only locals in the hunt at the Maitland Toyota Open and the Mark Richards Pro. Anderson knocked over Sarah Beardmore (Ballina), while Lendrum accounted for Gold Coast hot-shot Chris Bennetts. Lendrum is surprised that he remains the local carrying the hopes for a homegrown champion.

“I honestly didn’t think I’d get this far. “It’s pretty humbling to be mixing it with these big boys and that’s always in the back of my mind, but I’ve just got to take it heat by heat and see where it goes,” said Lendrum.

In what should be one of the heats of the day tomorrow, Anderson will confront Woods. Action will recommence on Sunday at 7.30am, when the women’s quarter-finals will hit the water. Officials will meet at 6am to determine whether the contest will again run at South Bar Beach.

Check the Live Action

Previous reports:
# 1 : Surfest hosts Mark Richards Pro/Maitland Toyota Open

# 2 : Mark Richards Pro & Maitland Toyota events hit Surfest

# 3 : Mitch Crews dominates Day 1 of MR Pro at Merewether

# 4 : Local trio keeping the dream alive at Mark Richards Pro
# 5 : Top seeds Buchan & Neve tumble at Mark Richards Pro

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