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Wash-Up - Rio Pro 2018

Contest Wash-Up The lead-up to Rio was a little undercooked, to put it mildly. The Founders Cup had just finished, and the surfing world was almost universally under-whelmed with pool wave contests. It turns out that most surfers actually wanted the unpredictable imperfection of the contests about which we so often complained. We were happy to trade machine perfection for last-minute buzzer-beaters, end-sections and contest results that actually meant something. So, we moved our attention back to the tour, hoping for some of that unpredictable magic. We... Read more

Last updated May 20, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Full Preview - Oi Rio Pro 2018

The cancellation of the Margaret River contest left many surf fans with a bad taste in their mouths. We lost all narrative tension regarding the contest rounds and emerging champion, we were starved of any real title race variation, our fantasy teams were all shot to pieces, the potential for a Mikey vs. Jesse heat was lost, and the surf media talked of little else but sharks and wave pools. Then the Founders Cup came and went, leaving behind the kind of empty amusement that arises when we watch more... Read more

Last updated May 10, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Oi Rio Pro - Metrics 2018

I have waited long enough for the WSL to move on from their wave machine experiment and get back to the core business of managing the world tour. There is still no heat draw or mention of wildcards (as of publishing), so I'll offer what I have for now. I'll try to update in time, but I have also included a few 'unannounced' surfers in the hope that their stats are useful when the full draw is released. All of our 'career' average heat score and win % statistics are... Read more

Last updated May 7, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Injuries/Wildcards - Oi Rio Pro 2018

I don't know why I'm bothering with this; the WSL is neglecting this event like an unattractive third child until the Founders Cup has spewed forth its final, mushy left. There's not much to go by as yet... Update: we have a draw and most of the wildcard details. Also, the KS wave pool has already been superseded as the best artificial wave in the world. That was quick, no? Surfers Out: Joel Parkinson - There has been no official reasons given for Parko's withdrawal, but... Read more

Last updated May 6, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Special Preview - Founders Cup

We needed something to fill the void after the Margaret River Pro fiasco. While the quasi-Olympics-team-event isn't a part of the tour, its novelty and immediacy put it slightly above the Oi Rio Pro when it comes to quenching my pro surfing thirst. Plus, there's a guarantee of no sharks. So let's grab a shitty American beer, take a spot in the bleachers and cast our eye over the Founders Cup...   Believe it or not, the name is derived from a reference to 'celebrating the past' through recognising... Read more

Last updated May 3, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Contest Preview - Margaret River

  As a proud Australian surfer, even I have to admit that 3 events is a lot for one country. No other country gets more than one (except the USA, which has one event in a pool that is hours from the coast and one event in Hawaii, whose surfers generally don't identify as American). And yet Australia gets three. One thing that the Australian 'leg' has going for it is diversity: The QuikPro offers potential cyclones, ludicrous crowds, sub-tropical water, sand bottom points and a city that lives and... Read more

Last updated April 9, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Contest Metrics - Margaret River

We have included the data for Jay Davies, Jack Robinson, Yadin Nicol and Jacob Wilcox in case they are added to the draw via a trials win. All of our our 'career' average heat score and win % statistics are taken from 2013-2018 WSL contest seasons. They do not reflect the entire careers of surfers who have been on tour longer than that. A successful fantasy player never relies on past results or projections alone; we suggest... Read more

Last updated April 8, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Injuries/Wildcards - Margaret River 2018

Well, the seeding isn't much more settled after a tumultuous Bells contest. Let's dust off our #cheersmick hangovers and cast an eye over the final event of the Australian leg:   Jeremy Flores - OUT (officially) Flores has recently become a father for the first time, with his longtime partner and French model Hinarani de Longeaux giving birth to a daughter, Hinahei. He has opted to withdraw from the event to spend time with his family. Take that, Julian.   Kelly Slater - OUT... Read more

Last updated April 7, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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The Wash-up - Bells 2018

  Contest Wash-Up Julian who? The Gold Coast seems like a lifetime ago. Maybe time went so slowly because the first few rounds were so pedestrian. I was growing weary of the 2-hits-out-the-back, 3-cutbacks-through-the-trough, safety-tag-the-end-section Bells bowl monotony. Nobody seemed inspired enough to take the contest by the balls. It was almost as if everyone was too scared to crash Mick's party, despite Mick himself walking a fine line of luke-warm success/elimination in the early rounds. When the R3 carnage began, I felt even more deflated. Maybe... Read more

Last updated April 6, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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Contest Preview - Bells 2018

Mick Fanning. That's almost the beginning and end of the preview for this event. Whoever wins it will be one of the few who can ignore the distraction of Mick's retirement, whoever knocks him out of the contest will be the eternal villain, and if Mick takes the whole thing out, Torquay will be bedlam. Regardless of where he finishes at this year's Bells, Mick's had a stellar career and, by all reports, will retire as one of the most respected guys on tour. Nobody can seem to write a... Read more

Last updated March 26, 2018 by Balyn McDonald

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