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News provided by ASP World Tour on 1 July 2005

With a consistent 1.5 metre (four foot) swell pulsing through the contest arena in St Leu, Reunion Island, organisers of the Rip Curl Search WCT are looking to begin the quarter-finals at 8am (local time).

And with only four hours of surfing to be completed today, a winner for the Rip Curl Search WCT, the fifth on the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour will be crowned around 12.30pm (local time).

Large crowds are again expected to gather along the beachfront to witness today’s run down to the final as the level of surfing on show will be of the highest order.

The left to right breaking wave at St Leu when it delivers the form it is showing today is acknowledged as one of the best performance waves in the world as it throws out over a shallow and dangerously sharp live coral reef.

With eight surfers remaining, six are Australian with one Brazilian and one American. The draw consists of: 12th seed Danny Wills (AUS) versus 21st seed Jake Paterson (AUS); 8th seed Mick Fanning (AUS) versus 17th seed Darren O’Rafferty (AUS); 19th seed Peterson Rosa (AUS) versus 7th Cory Lopez (USA) and; 14th seed Phil Macdonald (AUS) versus 6th seed Nathan Hedge (AUS).

All surfers are showing excellent form coming into today’s final rounds and with the top five seeds being disposed of in earlier rounds it opens the door for today’s remaining competitors to close the gap on the current ratings front runners, Kelly Slater, Trent Munro, CJ Hobgood and Andy Irons.

And while Macdonald, Hedge and O’Rafferty could be looking at their first WCT wins, both Wills and Rosa will be hoping to claim their first victories since Japan, 1998 and Brazil, 1998 respectively; Paterson will be chasing his 5th career win and his first since 2003; Lopez his first title since 2001 in Tahiti; and Fanning would be hoping to build on his great start to 2005 where he won the first event, the Quiksilver Pro that was held at Snapper Rocks, Queensland, Australia in March.


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