Action and crowds at the Quick silver and Roxy Pro held at Snapper Rocks. Sally Fitzgibbons in Blue. Pictured Picture Mike Batterham
Action and crowds at the Quick silver and Roxy Pro held at Snapper Rocks. Sally Fitzgibbons in Blue. Pictured Picture Mike Batterham

Sally Fitz amped for all-Aussie stoush

SALLY Fitzgibbons says she is "amped up" for an all-Aussie stoush she hopes will help catapult her to a maiden victory in the Roxy Pro 2018 world tour opener.

With world champion Tyler Wright and defending champion Stephanie Gilmore shock quarter-final casualties at the Gold Coast event on Monday, Fitzgibbons and Keely Andrew are the last Australians left standing in the annual event.

While a top three surfer on the world tour for the majority of the last decade, Fitzgibbons has never won the Roxy Pro - an event where 12 of the 16 winners have hailed from Australia.

"Nothing fires me up like going up against a fellow countrywoman. It really lifts me," said Fitzgibbons, who impressed with some airs against US youngster Caroline Marks, 16, in her quarter-final win.

"I can't wait for this one. I am amped."

Keely Andrew accounted for Stephanie Gilmore.
Keely Andrew accounted for Stephanie Gilmore. MARENELMAR

So too is Andrew who recorded the upset of the event in making only her third semi-final at the expense of Gilmore at her home Snapper Rocks break.

"To take one off Steph at Snapper is pretty special," said Andrew, who says she has bigger goals than ever before in 2018.

"This is my third year on tour and I have come to expect a lot more of myself.

"I have had a fight with my mind the last three years and I think I am finally winning it."

Tyler Wright went out in the quarters. Pic: Mike Batterham
Tyler Wright went out in the quarters. Pic: Mike Batterham

American Lakey Peterson, who knocked Wright out of the quarter-finals, will take on Malia Manuel in the second semi-final.

"Hopefully I just keep building momentum and go one better than last year," said Peterson, who finished runner-up to six-time Roxy Pro champion Gilmore in 2017.

Earlier Kelly Slater confirmed he would not be competing it the men's event on the Gold Coast to give a leg injury further time to heal.

"I think it best that I properly rehabilitate the injury and choose to surf wholeheartedly, not from the excitement or stress of a last-minute arrival. It's not very professional or responsible and it won't allow me to be at my best potential," he said.


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