11x World Champ Kelly Slater Knocked Off Tour For The First Time In History
Liam O’Brien just eliminated Kelly Slater from the Margaret River Pro.
Read the full day 3 comp report here.
Today, Kelly Slater lost to Liam O’Brien in the Western Australia Margaret River Pro in the Round of 32 — knocking him off Tour for the very first time in his illustrious 33-year-career.
Liam O’Brien (a 23-year-old engineering student from the Gold Coast) paired a 7.83 with a 7.70 to gain a solid early lead over the “G.O.A.T” in the Round of 32. Kelly answered back with a 7.83 of his own but came up 1.53 points short on his backup.
The 51-year-old 11x World Champion — who has spent more than 33 years on tour — will not be surfing in the latter half of the 2023 without a wildcard – which, to be fair, the WSL will almost assuredly offer him (*cough cough* remember the script).
In his post-defeat speech, Stace Galbraith asked what Kelly’s plans for the future are. His response was vague but resolute, “Plans for the future? I want to get really barreled. I don’t know, I’m not even looking at you, I’m looking at the Box, I just want to go surfing.”
Luckily, we’ll likely see Kelly soon enough at the upcoming Challenger Series event at Snapper Rocks. And with Snapper in glorious form it will be a chance to see our sport’s Achilles leave his tent and mount a comeback worthy of the demigod he is.
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