Kelly Slater confirmed for 2019 Vissla Sydney Surf Pro

February 20, 2019 | Surfing
Kelly Slater: he will return to Manly Beach | Photo: Cestari/WSL

Kelly Slater will return to Manly to compete at the 2019 Vissla Sydney Surf Pro.

The 11-time world surfing champion competed several times at Manly Beach and in the northern beaches of Sydney and won the event in 1997.

"I lived part-time in Avalon for 15 years, and I miss it. So, I am really looking forward to getting back to some old familiar territory," reveals Slater.

In 2018, the greatest surfer of all time missed eight of the 11 Championship Tour (CT) events. However, the World Surf League awarded him a wildcard for the 2019 season.

"I also plan to get a nice warm-up prior to jumping back on Tour full-time after close to a year and a half hiatus from competition."

The Vissla Sydney Surf Pro runs from the March 18-24 and is a Qualifying Series (QS) 6,000 event. Manly Beach prepares to relive the Dream Tour years when it was an important stop on the ASP World Tour.

"There's a lot of history dating back to surfing being introduced at Freshwater some hundred years ago by Duke Kahanamoku. Many years later, it hosted classic events with legendary performances by Wayne Lynch and Larry Blair," adds the Floridian champion.

Luke Madden, CEO of Surfing NSW, is thrilled with the announcement and hopes that Slater's participation will help boost the event's notoriety.

"We are over the moon to have Kelly confirmed for the 2019 Vissla Sydney Surf Pro. His involvement will strengthen and enhance what was already looking like being a huge event," underlines Madden.