2019 #KiwiWSL: Consistently Solid


Solid consistency is always useful in sports and that's exactly what we are getting on the World Surf League tour with Ricardo Christie and Paige Hareb. Christie grabbed his fourth-straight 17th finish at the Margaret River Pro in Australia, while for Hareb it was her second 9th finish in a row after two 17th results.

Remember that there are more surfers on the men's side, meaning more rounds and so a 9th result on the women's side is the equivalent to a 17th on the men's side. Plus, those results don't mean you finished 9th or 17th, they are the brackets in which you were eliminated; 33rd, 17th, 9th, 5th.

Christie was eliminated in the Round of 32, losing to Japanese surfer Kanoa Igarashi. Putting up a score of 11.10, Christie could only manage one wave with a score of 7+ while Igarashi had two waves of 7+ for a total score of 14.83 and knocking Christie out of the competition. The good news for Christie is that he made it past the Elimination Round, having come 2nd in his Seeding Round heat. Christie has consistently shown that he's good enough to progress through the early rounds, but he'll need grab a few 9th finishes to climb up the 2019 leaderboard.

Currently 29th of 41, Christie needs to creep up to at least 22nd to get past the qualification mark for 2020. That's the major goal for Christie and Hareb, so for Christie to get there he will need to crack his way into the Round of 16 stage soon.

Hareb was knocked out in the Round of 16, losing to Caroline Marks from USA. Hareb scored 11.10 with no scores over 6, while Marks registered two waves of 8+ to finish with 17.60. This came after Hareb finished 2nd to Marks in the Seeding Round, although Hareb's trend of not grabbing a strong score was evident at Margaret River as she couldn't manage a score of 5+ in the Seeding Round, followed by no scores of 6+ in the next round.

Sitting in 16th, Hareb has at least improved with results of 17, 17, 9, 9 and she isn't too far off the qualification mark which is 10th. If Hareb can consistently stay in that 9th bracket, while others slide up and down the leaderboard, then Hareb could cash in on a good day.

The next event is Oi Rio Pro in Rio de Janiero, Brazil starting June 20th. For kiwi surf nuts, we also have a few kiwis on the Qualifying Series circuit with Ella Williams and Billy Stairmand both enjoying a tournament win; Williams won the Mothernest Great Lakes Pro in Australia back in late February and Stairmaid winning the Gold Coast Open in early May.

Despite her win, Williams is a wee way off the qualification mark as she is currently 36th and the line is set at 6th. Stairmaid is in a similar spot, ranked 35th with the qualification line at 10th.

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Peace and love 27.