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Kelly Slater wins ASP Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast

March 9, 2011 |  7:02 am

Reigning and 10-time ASP World Tour champion Kelly Slater on his way to victory at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast.

Reigning and 10-time Assn. of Surfing Professionals World Tour champion Kelly Slater has started the 2011 season off victorious, winning the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast at Australia's Snapper Rocks by defeating defending event champion Taj Burrow.

Slater sprung to life on the final day of competition, posting his top results en route to the final against Burrow. Slater slowly built upon his scores in his bout against the Australian and his refined strategy proved to be enough for the Floridian to win.

"I’m having a lot of fun," Slater, 39, said. "It’s pretty easy. You go out and surf Snapper by yourself, it's pretty fun. To get to surf a contest is a bonus."

Burrow, 32, fell just short of the score needed to surpass Slater for the victory in the back-half of their duel.

"I’m excited about the tour for 2011," Burrow said. "It was a fun event and it’s just a bummer the waves didn’t hang in there at the end. I couldn’t better a 3. Hats off to Kelly, he built a house and it worked."

South African Jordy Smith, who finished second to Slater on last year's ASP World Tour, surfed with style, punch and bite throughout the duration of the Quiksilver Pro, but was unable to overtake Burrow in a repeat of last season’s event final.

"It’s disappointing when everything seems to be going well and the surf doesn’t cooperate," Smith, 23, said. "Taj surfed amazing though and it’s still a good start for me. I’m looking forward to the next event and I’ll just put my head down and work hard until then."

The next event on the ASP World Tour will be the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach, April 19-30 in Victoria, Australia.

Quiksilver Pro final results:
1 – Kelly Slater (USA) 11.20
2 – Taj Burrow (AUS) 10.17

Semifinal 1: Kelly Slater (USA) 16.77 def. Tiago Pires (PRT) 8.20
Semifinal 2: Taj Burrow (AUS) 17.56 def. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 11.40

Quarterfinal 1: Kelly Slater (USA) 15.40 def. Dusty Payne (HAW) 9.06
Quarterfinal 2: Tiago Pires (PRT) 14.64 def. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 14.40
Quarterfinal 3: Taj Burrow (AUS) 17.30 def. Brett Simpson (USA) 11.60
Quarterfinal 4: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 13.03 def. Alejo Muniz (BRA) 9.95

ASP Word Tour Top 5 (after Quiksilver Pro):
1. Kelly Slater (USA) 10,000 points
2. Taj Burrow (AUS) 8,000 points
3. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 6,500 points
3. Tiago Pires (PRT) 6,500 points
5. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 5,200 points
5. Brett Simpson (USA) 5,200 points
5. Dusty Payne (HAW) 5,200 points
5. Alejo Muniz (BRA) 5,200 points

-- Kelly Burgess

Photo: Reigning and 10-time ASP World Tour champion Kelly Slater on his way to victory at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast. Credit: Kirstin Scholtz / ASP