Tahitian surfer Michel Bourez claimed his first Pipe Masters title on Tuesday when worked his way through a star-studded field to win the season-ending Banzai Pipeline in Hawaii.
After dispatching world champion John John Florence in the quarters, Bourez swept aside American rookie Kanoa Igarashi in an unlikely final match-up to seal his third career tour victory.
For 19-year old Igarashi – the youngest surfer on the men’s Tour – reaching the final on his Pipe Masters debut was a remarkable feat, and beating surfing legend and 11-time world champion Kelly Slater in the semis made the exploit even more memorable for the rising star.
With a quarter-final finish Florence, who secured his maiden world title in Portugal in October, won the Hawaiian Triple Crown for a third time in his career.
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