Alex Ribeiro: his eyes are on the 2018 Championship Tour | Photo: Thurtell/WSL

Alex Ribeiro has taken out the 2017 Volkswagen SA Open of Surfing at New Pier, in Durban.

Despite the onshore wind, Dairy Beach delivered contestable three-to-four-foot waves for the last day of the prestigious South African surfing competition, a QS3,000 rated event.

In an all-Brazilian final, Ribeiro needed over 15 waves to find two high scores that would defeat Hizunome Bettero. The former Championship Tour campaigner is looking forward to requalifying in 2018 for the elite tour.

"The points are great here. Now I will be focusing on the super important Ballito and Japan events and hopefully get a win there also," stated the 20-year-old surfer.

The winner of the SA Open of Surfing will have his name engraved on the John Whitmore Cup, a trophy that honors the contribution of a man who developed the sport in South Africa between the 1950s and 1970s.

"It feels so good. Last night, I didn't get any sleep because I was just thinking of this comp. I was so excited to compete. I'm stoked to win here and share the final with my friend Hizunome."

2017 Volkswagen SA Open of Surfing | Final

1. Alex Ribeiro (BRA) 15.67
2. Hizunome Bettero (BRA) 11.57