Max Ayshford: an open champion

As the curtain closed on the 2010 NSW Open Surfmasters Titles, five more prestigious state titles were awarded today as scores soared high at Werri Beach.

Having seen the best 200 age surfers congregating upon the Kiama region over the last four days, memorable performances and epic conditions headlined the entire event – none more so than Open Men’s champion Max Ayshford (Matraville, NSW).

Defeating Rhys Bombaci (Kiama, NSW), Matt Jones (Yamba, NSW) and Toby Martin (Mona Vale, NSW) who finished second, third and fourth respectively, Ayshford was in the most sparkling of form.

Having claimed an Australian Junior Title as a 16-year-old and now a prestigious NSW Open Surfmasters Title two years later, Ayshford was over the moon with his performance today.

“I’m really stoked,” he said.

“Before the final it really dawned on me how much this event means to everyone, so it is awesome to take it home in my first attempt.”

Watching Bombaci annihilate his first wave, Ayshford played catch-up after a slow start; responding with a near-perfect 8.90 and 7.50 (out of a possible 10).

“I saw Rhys get that wave and it jolted me into action,” Ayshford admitted.

“To come out on top of the calibre of guys in the final, who are all of the standard I aspire to, it is a great feeling and confidence booster.”

After accruing a total heat score of 16.40 (out of a possible 20), Ayshford and his fellow finalists will now go onto represent NSW at the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival in August.

Open Women's champion Brittany Nichol (Cabarita, NSW) also claimed back-to-back titles with a dominant display of power surfing.

Defeating Rachael Campbell (Stanwell Park, NSW), Skye Burgess (Lake Heights, NSW) and Emily Clapoudis (Port Macquarie, NSW), who finished second, third and fourth respectively, Nichol was in great form.

Accruing a combined heat total of 13.60 (out of a possible 20), Nichol showed no signs of the injuries that have plagued her ASP Australasian Pro Junior campaign in 2010.

As conditions continued to provide near-perfect, metre-and-a-half walls over the final day, the best surfers in the state went ballistic – throwing down a plethora of excellent scores, as they searched for qualification to the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival.

Wayne Morrison (Port Macquarie, NSW) continued the impeccable expose, dropping a number of unbelievable scores including a near-perfect 9.25, 8.65, 7.20 and a 7.00 (out of a possible 10) in the Over 28 Men’s final to easily claim the prestigious title.

Having surfed with speed, power and critical manoeuvres all event, Morrison showed his amazing ability when it counted most claiming a combined heat score of 17.90 (out of a possible 20).

In the Over 35’s division it was former ASP World Tour stalwart Toby Martin (Dee Why, NSW) claimed his second successive NSW Open Surfmasters Title after over 15 years of professional competition, doing it in style with an impressive total heat score of 13.25 (out of a possible 20).

Following on from Morrison’s lead, Martin had the title wrapped up within the first five minutes, throwing down an amazing 9.50 (out of a possible 10) to stun his opponents into submission.