SNAPPER ROCKS, Queensland/Australia (Sunday, March 4, 2012) – The final day of the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast presented by Land Rover culminated today with perennial ASP World Title threat Taj Burrow (AUS), 33, and four-time ASP Women’s World Champion Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), 24, taking the respective wins in clean two-to-three foot (1 metre) waves at the primary venue of Snapper Rocks.
Burrow defeated dangerous South American Adriano De Souza (BRA), 25, in a Final that came down to the wire. De Souza caught a wave in the dying minutes and launched into a massive air-reverse, requiring a 7.87 out of a possible 10 to take the lead. The judges deliberated until after the siren sounded and when it was announced that De Souza came a mere 0.27 short, Burrow was chaired up the beach and declared the 2012 Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast champion.
De Souza finished runner-up at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast for the second time, after coming 2nd to Joel Parkinson (AUS), 30, in 2009. De Souza was easily one of the event’s top performers this season with gouging turns and inverted aerials taking him to a podium finish.
Burrow used a heat-high wave score of 9.43 to win with a total of 15.86 to de Souza’s 15.60 much to the delight of a raucous capacity Snapper Rocks crowd who adopted the West Australian as one of their own.
Burrow assumes the No.1 ranking as the World Tour heads to Bells Beach from April 3-14, while de Souza on No.2 is well placed to improve on last year’s finish of fifth on the world rankings.
Snapper Rocks has proved a happy hunting ground for Burrow, who has appeared in the past three finals, winning in 2010 and finishing second to Kelly Slater (USA) last year.
Burrow said victory was sweet after last year’s loss to Kelly Slater.
Earlier in the semi-finals, Burrow defeated South African Jordy Smith 15.56 to 14.20 while de Souza defeated crowd favourite Josh Kerr (AUS) 14.16 to 13.57 in the dying seconds.
Burrow was forced to work hard for the spoils with a tough road to the final including defeating opponents such as Dane Reynolds (USA), Julian Wilson (Aus), Adrian Buchan (Aus) and Smith.