Bombo swell delivers surprise result

SURFING 

Gerringong's Mikey Wright and Coledale's Billie Melinz have been left to fly the flag for the Illawarra at Australian Junior Surfing titles, after three of the region's best surfers were sent packing on day four at Bombo Beach.

Melinz spent yesterday eagerly awaiting her impending semi-final, as Wright progressed through to the same stage of the under 18 boys competition on the back of a second placed round two finish behind NSW champion Monty Tait.

The pair were locked in their own personal duel during the heat, but Tait put his round one setback behind him to narrowly come out on top, 14.67 to 14.63.

Wright's under 18s compatriot Kalani Ball couldn't emulate his performance as he bowed out in one of the tightest heats of the day.

The Stanwell Park based teen scored 13.36 for his two best, but it wasn't enough to overcome Fraser Dovell (13.83) and Jared Hickel (13.67).

Fellow Illawarra product Jarrod Szele went down swinging in his under 16s round two loss, while April Broughton lost out in the competitive under 18 girls.

"That is where the standouts of the heats were in the under 18 boys and girls," event co-ordinator Luke Madden said.

"South Australian girl Tayla Hannak took out a heat one with a score of 16.50 in a bit of an upset.

"She took down a couple of quality girls including Cali McDonagh who was one of the favourites.

"It is a great result for South Australia."

Madden paid tribute to the conditions in Kiama as a leading factor for the high quality action.

"We have had a three-to-four foot north-east swell which is really good for North Bombo because the swell is getting in here," Madden said.

"We have been here the last few days with tomorrow looking like we are going to go down Werri Beach when a southerly change comes in overnight."

"With the change of location tomorrow, we just need to have a look at the banks and triple check to see if we are going to finish the schools or otherwise going into the quarter finals and the semi finals of the other divisions.

"In the morning [today] we will know which way we are going to go, but there is definitely going to be waves."

The national school competition, the Mark Richard Shield, runs hand-in-hand with the Australian titles, with action entering its final stages.

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