Young guns do Queensland proud
QUEENSLAND claimed a hat-trick of Oakley State Teams Challenges at Surfers Paradise on Sunday after producing the most dominant display in recent years.
The collective 323.88 to 299.83 scoreline guarantees Queensland home-turf advantage in next year’s surfing equivalent of the State of Origin and further increases their overall series victories against New South Wales to 3-1.
Inspirational Queensland coach Gary ‘Kong’ Elkerton labelled the win his proudest Oakley State Teams Challenge victory to date.
“The effort of the five young Queenslanders during this year’s challenge confirms that these boys are some of the most talented surfers in Australia,” he said.
“I can’t wait to get the team together and do it all again next year.”
NSW sent a scare through the Queensland camp after an early victory to Byron Bay duo Danny Wills and Garret Parkes in the tandem division, and talk of a record comeback was rife on the beach.
The atmosphere in the NSW tent reached fever pitch when Matt Bemrose continued his solid day-one form, combining with teammate Davey Cathels to register a heat winning 14.4 out of a possible 20 in their tandem showdown against Queenslander’s Nick Vasicek (Coolangatta) and Chris Friend.
However, the Queensland side then steadied themselves as Friend and Vasicek redeemed their earlier defeat, by disposing of Dean Bowen and Parkes in their respective singles match-ups.
They sparked an onslaught of Queensland wins with excellent performances following from Jack Freestone (Coolangatta) and Julian Wilson.
From then on, the boys from north of the border never looked like losing.