Squires heads elite Scarborough line-up

SURFTAG

Scarborough Boardriders will be in the running for the surftag crown after qualifying for the Surftag Australian Championships this week.

Scarborough were one of 12 NSW clubs to qualify for the national titles on the Gold Coast in March after reaching the quarter-finals of the NSW qualifying event at North Narrabeen on Monday.

The team of Dave Hyslop, Hayden Blair, Rod Morgan, Nick Squires and Aaron Cahill fell agonisingly short of reaching the semi-final stage, going down to Long Reef in their quarter-final.

Club president Christian De Clouett said the qualification will end Scarborough's five-year absence from the national titles.

"I think it's the strongest line-up from one through to five we've had for at least the last five years," De Clouett said.

"We were the only side to score 80 points and lose [in the quarter final].

"In the previous heats teams were winning with 70 points and we managed to get 80 points and still got knocked off so it shows we've got the points in us.

"It was a bonus point that cost us in the quarter final but we qualified for Aussies so that's the main thing."

De Clouett said the addition of Nick Squires to the line-up after joining Scarborough from East Corrimal has taken the team to a different level.

"With Nick this year it's created a lot more belief in the club," De Clouett said.

"He's been surfing for East Corrimal but we've taken him on this year with a bit of a coaching role in our club and it looks like it's paid off.

"If all your surfers can score around that 20 point mark you're going to win your heats, and Nick's the type of guy who can give you 30 plus points and give you that buffer zone."

The exciting surftag format gives teams of five surfers one hour to complete three waves each. On completing three waves, team members must run up the beach and tag a teammate before they can enter the water. The team's combined score is tallied once all surfers have completed their three waves.

"Surfing is such an individual sort of pursuit so you never really get to surf for your club or for your mates, so it's pretty special," De Clouett said.

On the individual front, Squires is still alive at the Hurley Australian Open after winning through his heats at Manly Beach yesterday and will continue his tilt when competition resumes tomorrow.

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