Dustin Cuizon claims the Yumeya Billabong Pro Tahara

August 4, 2008 | Surfing

Dustin Cuizon

Dustin Cuizon (HAW) has defeated Pedro Henrique (BRA) to claim the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 6-Star Yumeya Billabong Pro Tahara in one-to-two foot (0.5 metre) waves at Akabane Long Beach today.

Cuizon had a banner day, first eliminating current ratings leader on the ASP WQS Nathaniel Curran (USA).

Dustin Cuizon (HAW) and current ASP WQS No.1 Nathaniel Curran (USA) in their Quarterfinal bout with an impressive 15.00 out of a possible 20 heat total.

"I feel so honored to win to Nathaniel," Cuizon said. "He is one of the best surfers in California and lots of people say he is closest to win this event. I was only lucky."

"The waves are pretty small today," Cuizon continued. "So I moved alot and looked for the wave to score big and I found it! This is my 3rd time in Japan and the people are so nice and the food is so good. I love Japan. I try my best to keep the momentum and hope to win the event."

Curran was unable to repeat his performance at last week’s ASP WQS 6-Star Honda U.S. Open, but receives 1650 points and looks very solid to qualify for the elite ASP World Tour in 2009.

Greg Emlie (ZAF), former ASP World Tour campaigner, fell to Cuizon in the Semifinals, but will take his equal 3rd place finish and put it towards his requalification campaign for the Dream Tour.

"The waves were very small and we had to have extra care with wave ion. I am very happy to get good waves and make the quarter finals," Emslie said. "Dustin was so strong in the semi final. He is so strong in small waves and deserves to win. I could only catch only 1 wave and there was nothing I can do."

Cuizon opened the final with a solid backhand wave to post an excellent 8.83 out of a possible 10 and put the pressure on Henrique. The Brazilian fought back with a 5.50, but when Cuizon locked in a second score of a 7.33 the Final was sealed and the young Hawaiian was crowned the 2008 Yumeya Billabong Pro Champion.

1. Dustin Cuizon (HAW)
2. Pedro Henrique (BRA)

3. Greg Emslie (ZAF)
Jadson Andre (BRA)

5. Nathaniel Curran (USA)
Andre Silva (BRA)
Shaun Gossmann (AUS)
Marlon Lipke (DEU)

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