Andino & Enever Win The Hurley Australian Open

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posted by James Willmott

After an epic week of competition at the Hurley Australian Open of Surfing, a QS6000 event held at Sydney’s Manly Beach, American Kolohe Andino and Australia’s Laura Enever have been crowned the 2015 champions. Despite a few early days of poor surf, Manly eventually turned on to produce some fun waves for some of the world’s best surfers.

Kolohe was the event’s number two seed and lived up to his exceptional reputation, posting big airs and powerful hacks to progress through to the Final of the Australian Open. Meeting Tahitian up and comer Mateia Hiquily, Andino lit up the line up almost immediately, posting a strong score of 9.27 which proved simply too strong for his fellow competitor.

Though some may not have heard too much of the young Tahitian, he surfed incredibly and bested the likes of Mick Fanning, Ryan Callinan, Billy Stairmand and Joan Duru for a spot in the Final.

“This has been a great event, but I’m not going to take my foot off the gas at all and I’m going to keep getting ready for Snapper,” Andino said. “I had a couple of heats where my back was up against the wall and I was able to fight through which is good mental prep for Snapper. I hadn’t really heard of Mateia (Hiquily) before, but I was super impressed by his surfing at this event, he was lighting these waves up – I told him to keep the momentum going and to go and get another result in Newcastle next week.”

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Laura Enever impressed her local crowd throughout the entire event with her aggressive and consistent style, out-surfing 6 Times World Champion Stephanie Gilmore and later Tyler Wright in the Final. The two both sat on scores of 7.77, though it was Enever who gained the stronger back up score, defeating Wright by a 0.83.

“Just before this event I went over to P-pass to surf some perfect waves and I’ve been wanting to do that for the last five years,” Enever said. “Lately I’ve been grinding away in contests and to be able to get away and chase a swell made all the difference. It feels so good, it’s almost a relief to win something again and in front of the home crowd makes it even better.”

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The Hurley Australian Open of Surfing provides surfers with great warm up opportunities for the Surfest in Newcastle held this week, and both the World Surfing League’s Quiksilver and Roxy Pro’s held at Snapper Rocks from the 28th of February.

*Imagery by Leah Taylor