Six surfers, super Pipeline, and a world title

December 8, 2015 | Surfing
Mick Fanning: Pipe or nothing | Photo: Cestari/ASP

Their time is now. The 2015 Billabong Pipe Masters in Memory of Andy Irons is ready to crown a new world surfing champion. Will it be Fanning, Toledo, De Souza, Medina, Wright or Wilson?

The wave height forecast for Hawaii leaves no doubts. It's going to be big. And the list of scenarios for the 2015 World Surf League title is too complex to put in words. One thing is certain: Mick Fanning leads the fleet.

"It's been an up and down sort of year. I feel like in France I was just hanging on, and now I just want to go and throw everything at it. It's no use playing tactics anymore; it's just go out and do your job. I want to do my best and to match Mark Richards with four titles would be a dream come true," explained Fanning.

It will be a battle between three Australians and three Brazilians. Filipe Toledo heads into Pipeline in second place, with only 200 points separating him from Fanning. Toledo knows he has a clear shot at the title. And he is ready for it.

"I fear no one. Just know that if I can do my best, I can beat anyone! So, my biggest opponents are my choices, my decisions. They need to be right. All my opponents are very good! They are not there for nothing. Each one has its characteristic, but Mick is already a three-time world champion. It is no small thing," Toledo told Brazilian media giant Globo.

De Souza has never won a world title. But he will never let an opportunity pass by. And he is incredibly close, only 450 points behind Mick Fanning. Can he do it? Of course he can.

"It's been an amazing experience for me to be in the Top 3 since the first event. This has always been a dream of mine, being on tour for ten years now, and I'm ready to win a title. Coming down to the last event of the year is also a dream to fight for a title here."

The 2015 Billabong Pipe Masters runs from December 8th-20th. The Pipe Trials will pick two surfers for the main event. The last event of the surfing season will also determine who will join the World Championship Tour in 2016.

2015 Billabong Pipe Masters | Round 1 Match-Ups

Italo Ferreira (BRA), Adrian Buchan (AUS), Glenn Hall (IRL)
Owen Wright (AUS), Jadson Andre (BRA), Dusty Payne (HAW)
Gabriel Medina (BRA), Keanu Asing (HAW), TBD
Adriano de Souza (BRA), Michel Bourez (PYF), TBD
Filipe Toledo (BRA), Kolohe Andino (USA), TBD
Mick Fanning (AUS), Sebastian Zietz (HAW), TBD
Julian Wilson (AUS), Kai Otton (AUS), Ricardo Christie (NZL)
Jeremy Flores (FRA), Matt Wilkinson (AUS), Jordy Smith (ZAF)
Kelly Slater (USA), Taj Burrow (AUS), C.J. Hobgood (USA)
Nat Young (USA), John John Florence (HAW), Brett Simpson (USA)
Bede Durbidge (AUS), Wiggolly Dantas (BRA), Adam Melling (AUS)
Josh Kerr (AUS), Joel Parkinson (AUS), Miguel Pupo (BRA)

The Summer Surf Gear Guide 2019