MANLY BEACH, SYDNEY (Sunday, 6 March 2016): Dion Atkinson (Seaford, SA) and Nikki Van Dijk (Phillip Island, Vic) have taken out the Australian Open of Surfing and the Aussie Bodies Women’s Pro respectively at Manly Beach.
After a couple of days with gruelling conditions, mother nature turned it on for a thrilling finals day with clean three foot waves on offer for competitors.
Van Dijk built momentum through each of her heats even eliminating local favourite and defending champion Laura Enever in the semifinals. The current world No. 10 left her best performance for the final posting two excellent scores a 9.66 and an 8.33, leaving runner-up Malia Manuel needing a combination score of 17.94 for the majority of the heat. Van Dijk posted her scores on lefts and rights going hell for leather on every turn she did.
“I’m so over the moon to win here at Manly,” Van Dijk said. “The waves were really fun today I felt like I was surfing a rip-bowl at home. Malia was surfing really well all event so I‘m stoked to get the win. There are so many people down here it’s such an amazing atmosphere on the beach. I’ve had the best week.”
Manuel’s performance was strong all event posting some massive scores, but was unable continue this in the final against her fellow CT competitor Van Dijk.
“I’m really happy to make the final,” Manuel said. “Posting some good scores and making some heats is a great way to relieve some stress before the next three CT events. Making the podium is always a good feeling so hopefully I can keep this going.”
Live event coverage of all the competition was webcast at www.australianopenofsurfing.com. General information is available at: www.australianopenofsurfing.com • #ausopenofsurf. Owned and operated by IMG, with the support of the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency Destination NSW, and Manly Council, the 2016 Australian Open of Surfing is expected to draw crowds in excess of the 255,000 people who flocked to Manly for the event in 2015.