The Battle Is ON For The WSL Final 5
The fight for a spot on the WSL Final 5 is in full swing at the Corona Open Mexico presented by Quiksilver. The defending World Champion and Olympic Gold medalist Italo Ferreira (BRA) along with fellow Brazilian and two-time WSL Champion, Gabriel Medina, both finished their Seeding Round matchups in second place, advancing to the Round of 32. While Medina has already secured a spot on the WSL Final 5, Ferreira, who is currently No. 2 in the rankings, has yet to secure a place at the Finals.
For Ferreira to clinch a WSL Final 5 spot in Mexico, he needs to make it to the final heat of the Corona Open Mexico presented by Quiksilver. No 3 in the world, Filipe Toledo (BRA) won his heat over Jeremy Flores (FRA) and wildcard Jhony Corzo (MEX), and needs to finish at least third in this event to clinch his spot in the Finals. Rookie of the year and currently No. 4 on the WSL Leaderboard, Morgan Cibilic (AUS) started strong by winning Heat 3 against Deivid Silva (BRA) and Olympian wildcard Rio Waida (IDN) and advancing straight through the Round of 32. He has only two events left to earn enough points and secure his place in the Rip Curl WSL Finals, in September.
“At the beginning of the year my goal was to re-qualify for 2022 and maybe be in the top 10,” said Cibilic. “Now my goal is 100% to get in the WSL Final 5. I’m very happy with my performance so far, my boards are solid under my feet. I’m stoked.”
Olympians Defay, Weston-Webb, Fitzgibbons Fight For a Spot In WSL Final 5
Out of the five women sitting at the top of the WSL Leaderboard, three can clinch a spot at the WSL Final 5 while in Mexico. Current World No. 3, Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) took the first heat win for the women’s at the Corona Open Mexico presented by Quiksilver. If she wins this event, she will lock in her place at the Rip Curl WSL Finals. Johanne Defay (FRA) and Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA), both finished their heats in second place and advanced straight to the Round of 16. Both surfers will clinch a spot in the WSL Final 5 if they make it to the finals in Mexico. Four-time WSL Champion and Olympic gold medalist, Carissa Moore (HAW) has already clinched her spot and is surfing in Mexico with the hopes of keeping her No. 1 position in the rankings in order to get the best seeding position for the Rip Curl WSL Finals.
“We have so many amazing women on tour,” said Fitzgibbons. “It’s so hard to win a heat, let alone make it to the final 5. I believe I’m capable of it though, I know what I have to do, so I’ll keep plugging it away, and hopefully, I’ll be there next month.”