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24 September 2014
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Women's Pro Title Hots Up In Fiji
Keala Kennelly
Hawaiian Keala Kennelly on song to win the Roxy Pro Fiji. Picture courtesy ASP
Hawaiian Keala Kennelly joins Australian Layne Beachley at the top of the Women's World Qualifying Tour after winning the Roxy Pro in Fiji.
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FACTS

+ There are currently 250,000 surfers in the UK.

+ The biggest surf normally occurs on a pushing tide, especially on the Bristol Channel coast.

+ Croyde Bay in North Devon and Fistral Beach in Cornwall are two of the most popular surfing beaches in Britain.

+ The first ever degree in surfing was offered by the University of Plymouth.

+ The record for the most number of surfers on a board was broken in 1989 at Fistral Beach, Newquay. Twelve surfers rode a 37ft longboard shaped by Tim Mellors.

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BBC Cornwall Surfing Correspondent Simon Alexander reports from the line-up.

24-year-old Keala Kennelly lived up to her reputation as a fearless competitor in powerful reef breaks defeating South Africa's Heather Clark by five clear points in the final.

In 4-5ft waves at Tavarua, Kennelly clinched victory over the world number four with a series of forehand snaps and floaters:

"I'm so stoked. It's unfortunate the conditions got worse as soon as the final started, as when you win an event you hope it turns on and is an awesome final. I was stoked it was an all goofy footer final," she added, since the two previous winners have been regular footers.

"I'm in a way better position than I was in this time last year. After being on tour for six years, I'm definitely thinking about the world title now" added Kennelly.

Winners of the Roxy Fiji Pro
Roxy Pro winners Keala Kennelly (left) and Heather Clark

Equal third were WCT newcomer Sofia Mulanovich, from Peru and 2002 ASP 'Rookie of the Year' Chelsea Georgeson. Both 19-year-olds were standouts during the contest, but had their runs stopped during the semifinals.

Beachley was the event's biggest upset, losing in round three to place equal ninth. Despite beating Caroline Sarran in the non-elimination first round, her French opponent gained revenge when it counted, with superior wave selection and great backhand surfing.

The world champion showed her fighting spirit during the final minutes needing an 8.0 though, and even rode a wave onto dry reef, but achieved more cuts and abrasions to her feet than points from the judges.

"I had a hell of a lot of bad luck out there today," said a disappointed Beachley. "Caroline had great wave selection and surfed the waves really strongly. She deserved to win the heat. On my last wave my back foot slipped off and I ended up on dry reef."

"My leash got stuck around a coral head while I was still attached and I couldn't get up, so I kept being dragged along dry reef. Some days you win and some days you lose, but I'm not going to beat myself up over it. It's just a bad day. I had a good start to the year and I think I can maintain that," added Beachley.



Current Women's WCT standings after two event:

1 Layne Beachley (Aus)
Keala Kennelly (Haw)
1560 points
3 Trudy Todd (Aus) 1524 points
4 Sofia Mulanovich (Peru) 1512 points
5 Jacqueline Silva (Brazil)
Chelsea Georgeson (Aus)
1308 points



RENNY GOOD AS GOULD AT WATERSPLASH

Renny Gould started his Jersey Surf Club season in great style winning the Rip Curl Surfabout at St Ouen's Beach. Goulds' power moves in 2 to 4 feet Watersplash waves were good enough to win the Open final. Jersey's Sam George took the longboard title seeing off a strong challenge from Dominic Boletta.


Final results:
Open Division
1
Renny Gould
2
Clayton Lidster
3
Scott Eastwood
4
Sam George
Ladies
1
Grace Davies
2
Keelin Begley
Bodyboard
1
Scott Harben
2
Clint Loake
3
Colin Crowther
4
Colin Laurent
Longboard
1
Sam George
2
Dominic Boletta
3
Minky Charlton
4
Scott Harben



ROBIN HIGH IN PECKING ORDER AFTER VICTORY

Frenchman Frederic Robin has taken the opening World Qualifying Series contest of the European season in Portugal. Robin, who put out Newquay's Mark Harris in round two, won the Rip Curl Series final to maintain a four-heat unbeaten run.

Euskadi's Aritz Aranburu finished in runners-up spot in Peniche ahead of French pair Patrick Beven, Eric Rebiere. British hopes faded in round four when Helston's Jake Boex finished last to Eneko Acero.

Former Exeter University surf club captain Martin Black bowed out in round two to Portugal's Jose Gregario. Cornwall's English champion Alan Stokes also lost early on to Portugal's David Luis. Welshman Nathan Phillips proved no match for Gonzalez Zubizareta in his second round heat.


TRIALS WIN FOR VAUGHAN IN WALES

An on-form Mark Vaughan made no mistakes to take the Channel Coast Welsh Trials Open title at Llantwit Major. In a hotly-contested final Vaughan took top spot ahead of Steve Phillips, Colm Garrett and Langland's Nick Swinnerton.

Vaughan's hopes for victory in the Seniors' final were dented by Chris "Guts" Griffiths who took the title by the narrowest of margins. Cat Thomson finished third with Jamie Bateman fourth. Matthew Harvey won the bodyboard division.



NATIONAL TITLES ATTRACT BRITAIN'S BEST

English champions Robyn Sunshine Davies and Alan Stokes are expected to return to Cornwall to defend their titles.

The Cornish pair have been competing on on the world professional surf circuit this year. In all nineteen titles are for grabs at the Rip Curl English Nationals being held at Watergate Bay this weekend.

At Freshwater West, thirteen titles are up for grabs at the Billabong Welsh Championships. Surfers will also be competing for a place in the two Welsh aquads due to compete in international competitions later this year

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