ARUGAM BAY – Duane Dusoto (HAW) reigning ASP World Longboard Champion maintains his world number one ranking after taking out today's SriLankan Airlines Pro final over Taylor Jensen (USA). The pair battled for the title in clean 4 to 5 foot (2 meter) surf at Arugam Bay point.
"I'm on top of the world!" Dusoto said. "This is a dream come true, this is what we work so hard for. The waves here have been amazing, it's never been flat and we had the best surf in the final, it was perfect. Aruman Bay is an awesome wave!"
Desoto had a tough run to the final winning his Quarterfinal clash against Justin Bing (ZAF) by 0.01. His Semifinal was also won by a narrow margin, defeating 2009 ASP World Longboard Champion Harley Ingleby (AUS) by 0.13. Desoto was quick to pass the praise onto his family, the locals and the waves at Arugam Bay.
"It is so good to surf a wave like this for an ASP World Longboard Event," Desoto said. "I want to thank my beautiful family who support me through everything I do. Sri Lanka and Arugam Bay you are beautiful people and I'm so glad to be here."
Jensen was the in-form surfer of the event, top scoring every round in the lead up to the Final, but was unable to find a solid back-up score in the final after scoring a 9.20 (out of a possible 10).
"My legrope came off and I had to swim in and get my board," Jensen said. "It took a long time to get back out, I was tired, and I only needed a 7.50 and I couldn't get it. I'm pretty happy though, second isn't bad."
The Women's ASP 6-Star Women's World Tour final was an all American affair with young Californians Courtney Conlogue (USA) and Lakey Petersen (USA) going for broke in the pumping surf. Both surfers were feeling the nerves, falling on great waves, but it was Conlogue who pulled it together and took the win.
"Lakey (Peterson) and I are great friends and have been surfing against each other for a long time," Conlogue said. "I was nervous on that last wave, I knew it was a good one and that I'd have to push it to get a good score. Luckily I did some nice turns and won the Final. I love this place, the waves are great and I'm already looking forward to coming back next year."
Peterson did some great surfing in the final, but was unable to put it all on one wave. She also landed a huge air-reverse just after the siren sounded.
"I was so bummed that I landed that air after the heat," Peterson said. "But I'm happy with the event, I would have loved to have won, but Courtney surfed great and second is a good result for me."
Highlights, photos, videos are available on www.srilankanairlinespro.com
Pix by Kithsiri de Mel