Gabriel Medina crowned 2018 World Surf League champion

December 18, 2018 | Surfing
Gabriel Medina: your 2018 World Surf League champion | Photo: Sloane/WSL

Gabriel Medina claimed the second World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour (CT) title of his career.

The 24-year-old surfer won the 2018 Billabong Pipe Masters after beating his direct opponent, Julian Wilson, in an epic final held in 12-to-15 foot barreling waves.

Medina paddled out for the final knowing that he was already a two-time WSL champion, but he made sure his name was also added to the history of the prestigious event.

"All my heroes have won this contest, and winning this event is a little different. I really wanted this one, and I worked hard for this one, so I'm really happy," expressed Medina.

"It was a great final. Julian is the toughest competitor to go up against, so I'm lucky I got two good waves. He won a final against me a few years ago, and I got this one, so it feels good."

Four years later, the boy from Maresias recaptures the golden trophy. Medina was the first athlete of the Brazilian Storm generation to raise the green-and-yellow flag high in the sky.

Gabriel Medina: he won his first WSL title in 2014 | Photo: Sloane/WSL

In 2015, Adriano de Souza claimed another world title for Brazil and, this year, Brazilian surfers won nine out of 11 CT contests.

Julian Wilson has been fighting hard to take surfing's ultimate trophy back to Australia, but he will have to wait another year.

"I'm so thankful for the incredible waves and the locals for allowing us to surf here. I'm ready to do it again next year. I put my heart out there and gave it my all, but Medina deservedly took the title, and I'm so happy for him," said Wilson.

"Beating Kelly out here in great conditions is no mean feat, and I take a lot of confidence from that. I'm so happy to represent my country and do my very best."

Jesse Mendes ended up winning the 2018 Triple Crown of Surfing.

2018 Billabong Pipe Masters | Final

1. Gabriel Medina (BRA) 18.34
2. Julian Wilson (AUS) 16.70

Men's 2018 WSL Leaderboard | Top 5

1. Gabriel Medina (BRA) - 62,490 points
2. Julian Wilson (AUS) - 57,585 points
3. Filipe Toledo (BRA) - 51,450 points
4. Italo Ferreira (BRA) - 43,070 points
5. Jordy Smith (ZAF) - 36,440 points

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