Underdogs dominate the 2017 Outerknown Fiji Pro

June 13, 2017 | Surfing
Leonardo Fioravanti: he eliminated Kelly Slater from competition at Cloudbreak | Photo: Cestari/WSL

Kelly Slater, the patron of the 2017 Outerknown Fiji Pro, has been knocked out of competition in Round 3.

The waves were not big, but they were fun. Cloudbreak delivered four-to-five foot surf and sent a few top seeds home early. For example, Connor O'Leary eliminated Slater.

"It is always tough to win that low scoring, but I am over the moon. I thought the energy was there at the start, but as soon as the trades came up, it went to nothing. I was glad I had two average scores to finish it off," said O'Leary.

But the Floridian is not alone. John John Florence is also packing after suffering at the hands of an inspired Leonardo Fioravanti. The Italian secure his second heat win of the season.

"I just got into a good rhythm. My mom always tells me that I surf better on my backhand so I was just thinking about what my mom always says and trying to hit the lip as hard as I could, and it paid off. I felt really confident," added Fioravanti.

Michel Bourez continued to world champion smackdown and defeated Mick Fanning in the do-or-die Round 3.

"The conditions were pretty tricky at the start of the heat. After my first wave, I knew I needed a small score just to put pressure on Mick. Mick is unbelievable. He is Mick Fanning, and there is nobody else like him. It worked out well, and I am glad to make it through," expressed Bourez.

Stuart Kennedy and Joan Duru also eliminated Adriano de Souza and Jordi Smith from the event, respectively, leaving the 2017 Outerknown Fiji Pro title up for grabs for the underdogs.

2017 Outerknown Fiji Pro | Round 4 Match-Ups

Ian Gouveia (BRA), Julian Wilson (AUS), Matt Wilkinson (AUS)
Italo Ferreira (BRA), Michel Bourez (PYF), Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA)
Joan Duru (FRA), Connor O’Leary (AUS), Joel Parkinson (AUS)
Bede Durbidge (AUS), Sebastian Zietz (HAW), Stuart Kennedy (AUS)

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