On Sunday 5th March 2017 athletes and officials were greeted at dawn but magical offshore three-foot waves at the infamous Manly Beach. There were sets pumping through six banks along the two kilometre stretch of beach for the entire remaining day of competition, probably the best waves the event has had in its history.
Men’s favourite and event #1 seed Julian Wilson put in a powerful performance to lead for the majority of the men’s final, before Brazilian QS #2 Jesse Mendez staged a late comeback, posting a stellar 9.40 wave score in the last 10 minutes of competition to snatch the title in front of thousands of beachside fans.
Mendez’s win at Manly will see him shoot to #1 on the World Surf League QS rankings tomorrow.
“I’m so happy to get that win,” Mendes said. “Coming up against Julian in the final was crazy. I knew I was going to have to surf my best – so that’s what I did. I have never done better than the quarters in Australia so to come and get to Finals is amazing. I have won event’s on the QS in the past and didn’t qualify, so a second and a first early in the season is great I can’t wait to see what this year has in store and if I will achieve my dream of qualifying for the Championship Tour (CT).”
Runner-up Julian Wilson said, “That was a really good contest. I’m really happy to get a few heats under my belt and have some close match ups. I’m just spewing I couldn’t get it done in the final. I had so many good battles especially in the final and feel it has given me a good foundation before Snapper kicks off. It has been a really good week.”
In the Girl’s Make Your Move Women’s Pro, title favourite and world champion Tyler Wright was unexpectedly knocked out in the semi-finals by Hawaiian World #7 Malia Manuel, who went on to win the title over world #5 Johanne Defay.
“I’m glad I’m not a bridesmaid today,” Manuel said. “I think when you get back to an event where you have runner-up, you can give yourself great pressure. I do not want to do that, put a relaxing way that it seems to work. It’s great to surf the heated CT women And I have super – injected into the sea bream.
Now the world qualifying series surfs go to Avoca Beach Komunity project central coast Pro begins on Monday.